A multiscale analysis of diffusions on rapidly varying surfaces

Duncan, A M, Elliott, C M, Pavliotis, G A and Stuart, A M (2015) A multiscale analysis of diffusions on rapidly varying surfaces. Journal of Nonlinear Science, 25 (2). pp. 389-449. ISSN 0938-8974

[img] PDF - Published Version
Restricted to SRO admin only

Download (1MB)


Lateral diffusion of molecules on surfaces plays a very important role in various biological processes, including lipid transport across the cell membrane, synaptic transmission, and other phenomena such as exo- and endocytosis, signal transduction, chemotaxis, and cell growth. In many cases, the surfaces can possess spatial inhomogeneities and/or be rapidly changing shape. Using a generalization of the model for a thermally excited Helfrich elastic membrane, we consider the problem of lateral diffusion on quasi-planar surfaces, possessing both spatial and temporal fluctuations. Using results from homogenization theory, we show that, under the assumption of scale separation between the characteristic length and timescales of the membrane fluctuations and the characteristic scale of the diffusing particle, the lateral diffusion process can be well approximated by a Brownian motion on the plane with constant diffusion tensor D that depends on a highly nonlinear way on the detailed properties of the surface. The effective diffusion tensor will depend on the relative scales of the spatial and temporal fluctuations, and for different scaling regimes, we prove the existence of a macroscopic limit in each case.

Item Type: Article
Schools and Departments: School of Mathematical and Physical Sciences > Mathematics
Research Centres and Groups: Probability and Statistics Research Group
Subjects: Q Science > QA Mathematics
Depositing User: Billy Wichaidit
Date Deposited: 15 Jun 2017 14:23
Last Modified: 15 Jun 2017 14:29
URI: http://srodev.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/68601

View download statistics for this item

📧 Request an update