Polyelectrolyte Translocation through a Corrugated Nanopore

K Nagarajan and SB Chen, MACROMOLECULAR THEORY AND SIMULATIONS, 29, 2000042 (2020).

DOI: 10.1002/mats.202000042

The problem of slowing down the rate of DNA translocation through a nanopore so as to facilitate detection of the genetic information remains a major challenge. In this study, the effectiveness of employing corrugated nanopores to reduce the polymer translocation velocity is investigated using dissipative particle dynamics (DPD) simulations. The average translocation time, , increases with the pore length and extent of variation of the pore cross-sectional area. A systematic comparison of between flat and corrugated nanopores with walls that are either neutral or attractive for the polymer is performed. The value of for a corrugated nanopore with an attractive wall is 158% greater than that for a flat pore with a neutral wall. The extent of increase in obtained by manipulating either the geometry of the pore or the nature of its interaction with the polymer alone is significantly smaller. This is because the combined effect of monomer-pore interactions and the spatial variation of the electric field strength significantly slows down the entry and escape of the chain from the pore.

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