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Complex Dynamics of Motor Proteins: Theorist's View

Prof. Anatoly Kolomeiskya
Rice University


Individual molecular motors, or motor proteins, are enzymatic molecules that convert chemical energy, typically obtained from the hydrolysis of ATP (adenosine triphosphate), into mechanical work and motion. Processive motor proteins, such as kinesin, dynein, and certain myosins, step unidirectionally along linear tracks, specifically microtubules and actin filaments, and play a crucial role in cellular transport processes, organization, and function. In this seminar some theoretical aspects of motor-protein dynamics will be presented in the light of current experimental methods that enable the measurement of the biochemical and biomechanical properties on a single-molecule basis. Several theoretical approaches will be compared. But we focus on discrete kinetic and stochastic models that yield predictions for all important dynamic properties. The combination of appropriate theory with single-molecule observations should help uncover the mechanisms underlying motor-protein function.