The totally asymmetric exclusion process with extended objects, a model for protein synthesis

Physics – Condensed Matter – Statistical Mechanics

Scientific paper

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19 pages, 12 figures, LaTeX

Scientific paper

10.1103/PhysRevE.68.021910

The process of protein synthesis in biological systems resembles a one dimensional driven lattice gas in which the particles have spatial extent, covering more than one lattice site. We expand the well studied Totally Asymmetric Exclusion Process (TASEP), in which particles typically cover a single lattice site, to include cases with extended objects. Exact solutions can be determined for a uniform closed system. We analyze the uniform open system through two approaches. First, a continuum limit produces a modified diffusion equation for particle density profiles. Second, an extremal principle based on domain wall theory accurately predicts the phase diagram and currents in each phase. Finally, we briefly consider approximate approaches to a non-uniform open system with quenched disorder in the particle hopping rates and compare these approaches with Monte Carlo simulations.

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