Microtubule: a dynamically unstable stochastic phase switching polymer
a Center for Theoretical Problems of Physicochemical Pharmacology RAS, ul. Kosygina 4, Moscow, 119991, Russian Federation
b Lomonosov Moscow State University, Faculty of Bioengineering and Bioinformatics, Leninskie Gory 1, building 73, Moscow, 119234, Russian Federation
c Lomonosov Moscow State University, Department of Physics, Vorobevy gory, Moscow, 119992, Russian Federation
d Federal Research Center of Pediatric Hematology, Oncology and Immunology, ul. Samory Mashela 1, Moscow, 117997, Russian Federation
One of the simplest molecular motors, a biological microtubule, is reviewed as an example of a highly nonequilibrium molecular machine capable of stochastic transitions between slow growth and rapid disassembly phases. Basic properties of the microtubule are described, and various approaches to simulating its dynamics, from statistical chemical kinetics models to molecular dynamics models using the Metropolis Monte Carlo and Brownian dynamics methods, are outlined.