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Charge fluctuations and their effect on conduction in biological ion channels.

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal article

Published

Journal publication date2009
JournalJournal of Statistical Mechanics: Theory and Experiment
VolumeP01010
Original languageEnglish

Abstract

The effect of fluctuations on the conductivity of ion channels is investigated. It is shown that modulation of the potential barrier at the selectivity site due to electrostatic amplification of charge fluctuations at the channel mouth exerts a leading-order effect on the channel conductivity. A Brownian dynamical model of ion motion in a channel is derived that takes into account both fluctuations at the channel mouth and vibrational modes of the wall. The charge fluctuations are modeled as a shot noise flipping the height of the potential barrier. The wall fluctuations are introduced as a slow vibrational mode of the protein motion that modulates ion conductance both stochastically and periodically. The model is used to estimate the contribution to the conductivity of ion channels coming from the electrostatic amplification of charge fluctuations.