Hervé Mohrbach

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Based on the hypothesis that the GDP-tubulin dimer is a conformationally bistable molecule-rapidly fluctuating between a discrete curved and a straight state-we develop a model for polymorphic dynamics of the microtubule lattice. We show that GDP-tubulin bistability consistently explains unusual dynamic fluctuations, the apparent length-stiffness relation(More)
We derive the single molecule equation of state (force-extension relation) for DNA molecules bearing sliding loops and deflection defects. Analytical results are obtained in the large force limit by employing an analogy with instantons in quantum mechanical tunneling problems. The results reveal a remarkable feature of sliding loops--an apparent strong(More)
We derive the equation of state of DNA under tension that features a loop. Such loops occur transiently during DNA condensation in the presence of multivalent ions or permanently through sliding protein linkers such as condensin. The force-extension relation of such looped-DNA modeled as a wormlike chain is calculated via path integration in the(More)
We develop a general theory of microtubule (MT) deformations by molecular motors generating internal force doublets within the MT lattice. We describe two basic internal excitations, the S and V shape, and compare them with experimental observations from literature. We explain the special role of tubulin vacancies and the dramatic deformation amplifying(More)
Microtubules have been in the focus of biophysical research for several decades. However, the confusing and mutually contradictory results regarding their elasticity and fluctuations have cast doubt on their present understanding. In this paper, we present the empirical evidence for the existence of discrete guanosine diphosphate (GDP)–tubulin fluctuations(More)
The buckling of biopolymers is a frequently studied phenomenon The influence of thermal fluctuations on the buckling transition is, however, often ignored and not completely understood. A quantitative theory of the buckling of a wormlike chain based on a semiclassical approximation of the partition function is presented. The contribution of thermal(More)
Particles embedded in a fluctuating interface experience forces and torques mediated by the deformations and by the thermal fluctuations of the medium. Considering a system of two cylinders bound to a fluid membrane, we show that the entropic contribution enhances the curvature-mediated repulsion between the two cylinders. This is contrary to the usual(More)
The fate of every eukaryotic cell subtly relies on the exceptional mechanical properties of microtubules. Despite significant efforts, understanding their unusual mechanics remains elusive. One persistent, unresolved mystery is the formation of long-lived arcs and rings, e.g., in kinesin-driven gliding assays. To elucidate their physical origin we develop a(More)
Biofilaments like F-actin or microtubules, as well as cilia, flagella, or filament bundles, are often deformed by distributed and time-dependent external forces. It is highly desirable to characterize these filaments' mechanics in an efficient way, either using a single experiment or a high throughput method. We here propose a dynamic power balance approach(More)
The dynamic of a classical system can be expressed by means of Poisson brackets. In this paper we generalize the relation between the usual non covariant Hamiltonian and the Poisson brackets to a covariant Hamiltonian and new brackets in the frame of the Minkowski space. These brackets can be related to those used by Feynman in his derivation of Maxwell’s(More)