Lipid bilayer mechanics is the study of the physical material properties of lipid bilayers, classifying bilayer behavior with stress and strain rather than biochemical interactions. These properties are typically characterized in terms of three mechanical elastic modulus: the area expansion modulus Ka, a bending modulus Kb and an edge energy . For fluid bilayers the shear modulus is by definition zero, as the free rearrangement of molecules within plane means that the structure will not support shear stresses. These mechanical properties affect several membrane-mediated biological processes. In particular, the values of Ka and Kb affect the ability of proteins and small molecules to insert into the bilayer. Bilayer mechanical properties have also been shown to alter the function of mechanically activated ion channels.
Famous quotes containing the word mechanics:
“It is only the impossible that is possible for God. He has given over the possible to the mechanics of matter and the autonomy of his creatures.”
—Simone Weil (19091943)