Regular Article

The European Physical Journal E

, Volume 30, Issue 1, pp 7-18

Ground-state properties of tubelike flexible polymers

  • T. VogelAffiliated withInstitut für Theoretische Physik and Centre for Theoretical Sciences (NTZ), Universität LeipzigInstitut für Festkörperforschung, Theorie II, Forschungszentrum Jülich Email author 
  • , T. NeuhausAffiliated withJülich Supercomputing Centre, Forschungszentrum Jülich
  • , M. BachmannAffiliated withInstitut für Theoretische Physik and Centre for Theoretical Sciences (NTZ), Universität LeipzigInstitut für Festkörperforschung, Theorie II, Forschungszentrum Jülich
  • , W. JankeAffiliated withInstitut für Theoretische Physik and Centre for Theoretical Sciences (NTZ), Universität Leipzig

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Abstract

In this work we investigate the structural properties of native states of a simple model for short flexible homopolymers, where the steric influence of monomeric side chains is effectively introduced by a thickness constraint. This geometric constraint is implemented through the concept of the global radius of curvature and affects the conformational topology of ground-state structures. A systematic analysis allows for a thickness-dependent classification of the dominant ground-state topologies. It turns out that helical structures, strands, rings, and coils are natural, intrinsic geometries of such tubelike objects.

PACS

05.10.-a Computational methods in statistical physics and nonlinear dynamics 87.15.A- Theory, modeling, and computer simulation 87.15.Cc Folding: thermodynamics, statistical mechanics, models, and pathways