• G. Amici, M. Caraglio, E. Orlandini and C. Micheletti
    Topological Friction and Relaxation Dynamics of Spatially Confined Catenated Polymers
    ACS Macro Lett., 2022, 11 1-6
    Link to online article

  • Abstract
    We study catenated ring polymers confined inside channels and slits with Langevin dynamics simulations and address how the contour position and size of the interlocked or physically linked region evolve with time. We show that the catenation constraints generate a drag, or topological friction, that couples the contour motion of the interlocked regions. Notably, the coupling strength decreases as the interlocking is made tighter, but also shorter, by confinement. Though the coupling strength differs for channel and slit confinement, the data outline a single universal curve when plotted against the size of the linked region. Finally, we study how the relaxation kinetics changes after one of the rings is cut open and conclude that considering interlocked circular polymers is key for isolating the manifestations of topological friction. The results ought to be relevant for linked biomolecules in experimental or biological confining conditions.