Taking the accurate theoretical solutions of Coleman and Swigon for a DNA plasmid in a plectonemic state under imposed link and responsive writhe, we examine in detail the working of the two types of cutting enzyme (topoisomerase Type 1 and topoisomerase Type 2). The mechanical processes involved can generate a plethora of outcomes, all assigning different levels of relaxation to the molecule. Alternative outcomes arise when there are co-existing (meta-) stable equilibrium states. Resolution of the outcome would then require a dynamic analysis of the relaxation process, though the Maxwell criterion can offer some guidance.
|Number of pages||8|
|Journal||The European Physical Journal. Special Topics|
|Publication status||Published - Dec 2008|