Europhys. Lett.
Volume 73, Number 4, February 2006
Page(s) 621 - 627
Section Interdisciplinary physics and related areas of science and technology
Published online 13 January 2006
Europhys. Lett., 73 (4), pp. 621-627 (2006)
DOI: 10.1209/epl/i2005-10440-4

Relation between cyclization of polymers with different initial conditions

C. Yeung1 and B. A. Friedman2

1  School of Science, The Pennsylvania State University at Erie, The Behrend College Erie, PA 16563-0203, USA
2  Department of Physics, Sam Houston State University - Huntsville, TX 77341, USA

received 30 September 2005; accepted 26 December 2005
published online 13 January 2006

We study cyclization of polymer chains in which the reactive ends of the chains are initially in close proximity (ring initial conditions). We find a surprising general relation between cyclization with ring and equilibrium initial conditions, namely that $\Phi_{ring}(t) \propto \upd\Phi/\upd t_{eq}$, where $\Phi(t)$ is the survival fraction. We show that this proportionality is exact for a special type of non-generic ring initial conditions and use an approximate argument to motivate the proportionality for more general ring initial condition. Our analytic results are confirmed by Langevin simulations of Gaussian chains. Earlier work for very long Rouse chains with equilibrium initial conditions shows that $\upd\Phi/\upd t_{eq} \sim t^{-1/4}$ for times less than the longest polymer relaxation time. Therefore our relation shows that $\upd\Phi/\upd t_{ring} \sim t^{-5/4}$ for a ring initial distribution under the same conditions.

82.35.-x - Polymers: properties; reactions; polymerization.
82.20 Wt - Computational modeling; simulation.

© EDP Sciences 2006