Biological cells have evolved intriguingly complex materials whose architecture surpass by far most man-made materials. Understanding the processing routes and properties of nature's molecular and macromolecular assemblies is crucial for revealing the molecular secrets of cell function. Simultaneously, knowledge of nature's solutions to optimizing cellular functions inspires new synthetic approaches in materials science. This 1998 volume brings together researchers in this field which straddles biology, chemistry, physics and materials science. Contributions provide a cross-section of research into the materials properties of the cell and its constituents, and range from discussions of mechanical properties of individual molecules to the growth and motion of whole cells. Topics include: mechanisms of DNA; the cytoskeleton, semiflexible polymers, polyelectrolytes and motor proteins; membranes - properties, models and interactions with macromolecules; biomaterials; and cells and cellular processes.
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