Molecular Seismology: An Inverse Problem in Nanobiology
Thursday, September 20, 2007 - 4:45pm - 5:00pm
The material properties of an elastic fiber like DNA will change in space and time as ligands associate with it. This observation affords a new direction in single molecule studies provided that material properties such as the density profile can be measured in space and time. In fact, this is precisely the objective of seismology, where the mathematics of inverse problems have been employed with success. We argue that inverse problems in elastic media can be directly applied to biophysical problems of fiber-ligand association, and demonstrate that robust algorithms exist to perform material reconstruction in the condensed phase.