Protein chains of the (FG)$_n$ ($n \simeq$ 300) type cap the cytoplasmatic side of the nucleopore complex, which connects the nucleus to the remainder of an eukaryotic cell. We study the properties of three fundamental polymer models that represent these filaments using Monte Carlo computer simulations. Random walks and the worm like chain model cannot account for the unusual size selectivity of the pore, while a two-dimensional arrangement of intrinsically disordered block copolymers with a high content of $\alpha$-helices is in agreement with the biochemical findings. We predict a linear increase of the free energy barrier of protein transport through the pore with increasing protein diameter, which can be probed experimentally using atomic force microscopy or optical tweezers.
- Pub Date:
- June 2020
- Physics - Biological Physics;
- Quantitative Biology - Biomolecules
- This document is the unedited version of a manuscript that has been submitted to a scientific journal for consideration as publication and may be downloaded for personal use only