- Theory, analysis, and interpretation of single-molecule force spectroscopy experiments: Olga Dudko's group updates their highly important theoretical work on interpreting non-equilibrium single molecule folding and unfolding experiments with this new paper. From people who read the pre-print, I understand the functions they give in this paper give much more robust fits than the ones in their previous work.
- Length of Time's Arrow: Gavin Crooks (of the Crooks Fluctuation Theorem fame) has a paper in Phys Rev Lett which uses the reversible folding and unfolding of RNA molecules to investigate fundamental questions of why time runs in one direction. That is some seriously hardcore physics, and one of the rare few examples of "biology in the service of physics" rather than "physics in the service of biology." I hope I haven't forgotten too much stat mech to make heads or tails of this, but I'm going to give it my best.
- Remeasuring the Double Helix: While not strictly about force spectroscopy (nor actually single molecule, for that matter), this paper from a group here at Stanford uses small angle X-ray scattering (SAXS) to investigate the bending behavior of small DNA molecules, a very hot topic. This relates to single molecule force spectroscopy because some experiments show the apparent behavior of short molecules differing markedly from the behavior seen in single molecule pulling experiments of longer molecules. This work supports the view of Jon Widom's work (among others) showing much higher flexibility than expected for short double stranded DNAs.
- Single-molecule spectroscopy of fluorescent proteins:
VijayVinod Subramaniam is an expert on photophysics of fluorescent protein, and as these proteins are getting used more and more for single molecule assays, their photophysics in the single molecule regime are more important. This looks interesting.
- A stochastic single-molecule event triggers phenotype switching of a bacterial cell: I haven't been following Sunney Xie's work very closely, but they have been working on single molecule detection of gene regulation, and this new work continues along that direction. Probably worth a look-see.