Role of Dissolved Salts in Thermophoresis of DNA: Lattice-Boltzmann Simulations

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Published in: Physical Review E 83, 2011


We use a lattice Boltzmann based Brownian dynamics simulation to investigate the dependence of DNA thermophoresis on its interaction with dissolved salts. We find the thermal diffusion coefficient DT depends on the molecule size, in contrast with previous simulations without electrostatics. The measured ST also depends on the Debye length. This suggests thermophoresis of DNA is influenced by the electrostatic interactions between the polymer beads and the salt ions. However, when electrostatic forces are weak, DNA thermophoresis is not found, suggesting that other repulsive forces such as the excluded volume force prevent thermal migration.