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A Simple Mechanical Model for Synthetic Catch Bonds

38 Pages Posted: 13 Feb 2019 Sneak Peek Status: Review Complete

See all articles by Kerim C. Dansuk

Kerim C. Dansuk

Northwestern University - Department of Mechanical Engineering

Sinan Keten

Northwestern University - Department of Mechanical Engineering

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Abstract

Catch bonds are protein-ligand bonds which become more difficult to break with larger applied force, a counterintuitive phenomenon that is yet to be reproduced in synthetic systems. Here, we have demonstrated that a simple mechanical design based on a tweezer-like mechanism can exhibit catch bond characteristics under thermal excitations. The tweezer has a force-sensitive switch which controls the transition of the system to a high-ligand-affinity state with additional ligand-tweezer interactions. Applying kinetic theory to a two-mass-two-spring idealized model of the tweezer, we show that by tuning the shape of the switch and the ligand-tweezer interaction energy landscapes, we can achieve greater lifetimes at larger force levels. We validate our theory with molecular dynamics simulations and produce a characteristic lifetime curve reminiscent of catch bonds. Our analysis reveals minimal design guidelines for reproducing the catch bond phenomenon in synthetic systems such as molecular switches/foldamers, DNA linkers and nanoparticle networks.

Suggested Citation

Dansuk, Kerim C. and Keten, Sinan, A Simple Mechanical Model for Synthetic Catch Bonds (February 1, 2019). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3327227 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3327227
This is a paper under consideration at Cell Press and has not been peer-reviewed.

Kerim C. Dansuk

Northwestern University - Department of Mechanical Engineering

2001 Sheridan Road
Evanston, IL 60208
United States

Sinan Keten (Contact Author)

Northwestern University - Department of Mechanical Engineering ( email )

2001 Sheridan Road
Evanston, IL 60208
United States

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