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Ann. Henri Poincare 4, Suppl. 1 (2003) S459 S474 c Birkhauser Verlag, Basel, 2003
 

Summary: Ann. Henri Poincar´e 4, Suppl. 1 (2003) S459 ­ S474
c Birkh¨auser Verlag, Basel, 2003
1424-0637/03/01S459-16
DOI 10.1007/s00023-003-0936-8 Annales Henri Poincar´e
Polymer Transport in Random Potentials
and the Genetic Code: The Waltz of Life
M. Aldana-Gonz´alez, G. Cocho, H. Larralde and G. Mart´inez-Mekler
Abstract. We address the question of why the translation from nucleic acids to pro-
tein forming amino acids is carried out by triplets known as codons. We approach
this problem from a dynamical point of view by considering the translocation
properties of primitive molecular machines operating under prebiotic conditions
[1, 2, 3, 4]. Our model captures some basic ribosome-mRNA interaction features.
We consider short chains of charged particles interacting with polymers via elec-
trostatic forces, constrained to move in quasi one dimensional geometries, subject
to external forcing. Our numerical and analytic studies of statistical properties of
random chain/polymer potentials suggest that, under very general conditions, a
dynamics is attained in which the chain moves along the polymer in steps of three
monomers, traversing swiftly two monomers and lingering on the third one as in
a waltz. This behavior is enhanced when we consider present day protein coding
sequences. We also comment on noncoding sequences. We argue that this property

  

Source: Aldana, Maximino - Centro de Ciencias Físicas, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México

 

Collections: Physics