par Lutsko, James
Référence Journal of physics. Condensed matter, 28, 24, 244020
Publication Publié, 2016-04
Article révisé par les pairs
Résumé : Dense protein clusters are known to play an important role in nucleation of protein crystals from dilute solutions. While these have generally been thought to be formed from a metastable phase, the observation of similar, if not identical, clusters above the critical point for the dilute-solution/strong-solution phase transition has thrown this into doubt. Furthermore, the observed clusters are stable for relatively long times. Because protein aggregation plays a central role in some pathologies, understanding the nature of such clusters is an important problem. One mechanism for the stabilization of such structures was proposed by Pan, Vekilov and Lubchenko and was investigated using a dynamical density functional theory model which confirmed the viability of the model. Here, we revisit that model and incorporate additional physics in the form of state-dependent reaction rates. We show by a combination of numerical results and general arguments that the state-dependent rates disrupt the stability mechanism. Finally, we argue that the state-dependent reactions correct unphysical aspects of the model with ideal (state-independent) reactions and that this necessarily leads to the failure of the proposed mechanism.