1. Physics of Living Systems
  2. Neuroscience
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Magnetogenetics: Problems on the back of an envelope

  1. Polina Anikeeva  Is a corresponding author
  2. Alan Jasanoff  Is a corresponding author
  1. Massachusetts Institute of Technology, United States
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Cite this article as: eLife 2016;5:e19569 doi: 10.7554/eLife.19569
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Molecular-scale magnetic interaction energies.

The energies associated with various magnetogenetic components, as estimated optimistically by Meister, are labeled in magenta. Each is orders of magnitude smaller than the thermal energy per degree of freedom at room temperature (dark blue). In contrast, based on our calculations, interactions involving magnetite particles (Fe3O4; light blue) can exceed the thermal energy (kT) at room temperature. These calculations assume that the magnetization of magnetite is 480 emu/cm3 and that the specific loss power for an individual particle is 24 fW. Note that the x-axis is logarithmic. The strength of the earth's magnetic field varies between about 25 and 65 microtesla at the earth's surface. mT: millitesla; B: magnetic field; k: Boltzmann’s constant; T: temperature.

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