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Thermal fluctuations of red blood cell membrane via a constant-area particle-dynamics model.

Authors
  • Marcelli, Gianluca
  • Parker, Kim H
  • Winlove, C Peter
Type
Published Article
Journal
Biophysical journal
Publication Date
Oct 01, 2005
Volume
89
Issue
4
Pages
2473–2480
Identifiers
PMID: 16055528
Source
Medline
License
Unknown

Abstract

We describe a model of the mechanical properties of the cell plasma membrane using a finite-temperature particle-dynamics simulation of the whole cell, in which a two-dimensional network of virtual particles embedded in a three-dimensional closed surface represents the membrane. The particles interact via harmonic potential and dihedral angle potential and are subject to a constant area constraint. The evolution of the positions of the particles yields the equilibrium state of the membrane and allows determination of the membrane thermal fluctuations and the elastic moduli. We show that time-averaging of the cell-model configurations allows quantitative comparison with experimental data on membrane fluctuations and elastic moduli of the red blood cell.

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