Force-driven polymer translocation through a nanopore: An old problem revisited

Payam Rowghanian, Alexander Y. Grosberg

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


    We consider DNA translocation through a pore in a planar membrane. The pore is so narrow that only one DNA segment can fit in. Assuming that the biasing force f acts inside the pore only, and that the DNA monomer number N is asymptotically large, we modify the previously developed treatment of the stretched part of the pre-translocated polymer by introducing the concept of "iso-flux trumpet". We show that friction of a moving chain in the trumpet, although it determines the speed of the process, provides only a marginal fraction of overall dissipation in the process. The dominant dissipation turns out to be due to irreversible entropic squeezing of the chain into the small pore. We also discover that because of the role of the membrane a much larger amount of heat of order kBT per monomer gets transferred from the heat bath on the post-translocation side to that on the pre-translocation side.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Pages (from-to)14127-14135
    Number of pages9
    JournalJournal of Physical Chemistry B
    Issue number48
    StatePublished - Dec 8 2011

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
    • Surfaces, Coatings and Films
    • Materials Chemistry


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