Conformational Statistics of DNA

Sunday, September 16, 2007 - 1:45pm - 2:45pm
EE/CS 3-180
Gregory Chirikjian (Johns Hopkins University)
DNA can be viewed as a semiflexible polymer, and represented at a coarse scale as a continuous helical elastic rod.
In this talk, methods from the theory of Lie groups are used to analyze equilibrium conformations
of helical rod models of DNA with end constraints. When the ends of a segment of DNA are free to move, the resulting
cloud of reference frames visited by the distal end of the segment relative to the proximal end can be characterized
as a probability density function on the Euclidean motion group. The relationship between this pdf and
the stiffness parameters of the helical rod model is derived using methods of noncommutative harmonic