Relaxation dynamics of fluid membranes

Author (s): Arroyo, M. and DeSimone, A.
Journal: Physical Review E

Volume: 79, Issue 3
Pages: 31914 – 31898
Date: 2009

We study the effect of membrane viscosity in the dynamics of liquid membranes?possibly with free or internal boundaries? driven by conservative forces (curvature elasticity and line tension) and dragged by the bulk dissipation of the ambient ffuid and the friction occurring when the amphiphilic molecules move relative to each other. To this end, we formulate a continuum model which includes a new form of the governing equations for a two-dimensional viscous ffuid moving on a curved, time-evolving surface. The effect of membrane viscosity has received very limited attention in
previous continuum studies of the dynamics of ffuid membranes, although recent coarse-grained discrete simulations suggest its importance. By applying our model to the study of vesiculation and membrane fusion in a simpliffed geometry, we conclude that membrane viscosity plays a dominant role in the relaxation dynamics of ffuid membranes of sizes comparable to those found in eukaryotic cells, and is not negligible in many large synthetic systems of current interest.



  title = {Relaxation dynamics of fluid membranes},
  author = {Arroyo, M. and DeSimone, A.},
  journal = {Phys. Rev. E},
  volume = {79},
  issue = {3},
  pages = {031915},
  numpages = {17},
  year = {2009},
  month = {Mar},
  publisher = {American Physical Society},
  doi = {10.1103/PhysRevE.79.031915},
  url = {}