Manipulating molecules one at a time: from energy to information

 Relatore: Prof. Felix Ritort

Small Biosystems Lab, Departament de Física de la Matèria Condensada, Facultat de Física, Universitat de Barcelon


Luogo: link Teams
Eventuale Collegamento Web:
“Take a single DNA molecule and pull from its extremities while recording the force-extension curve until it gets fully straightened.” This thought experiment, which was just a dream a few decades ago, has become standard in many research labs worldwide. Force spectroscopy techniques (such as laser optical tweezers) are a fabulous tool for manipulating and monitoring biological molecules' direct action at the individual level. By measuring forces in the piconewton range and energies roughly equivalent to 1kT, we have the experimental accuracy in resolving the thermal energy unit. Recent advances in such technologies combined with theoretical developments in nonequilibrium physics offer the exciting prospect of experimentally testing fundamental physical principles and concepts in single-molecule experiments [1].
This talk will illustrate laser optical tweezers for single-molecule manipulation and some of the main applications in physics and biology. In particular, I will also present results on a Maxwell demon's experimental realization using single DNA molecules pulled under feedback protocols as a pioneering example of the thermodynamics of data processing and information [2].

1. F. Ritort, The noisy and marvelous molecular world of biology, Inventions, 4(2) (2019) 24
2. M. Ribezzi-Crivellari and F. Ritort, Large work extraction and the Landauer limit in the Continuous Maxwell Demon, Nature Physics 15 (2019) 660–664
 E-mail organizzatore:


Modificato il