Chemical sensing by nonequilibrium cooperative receptors

Monica Skoge, Sahin Naqvi, Yigal Meir, Ned S. Wingreen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

31 Scopus citations


Cooperativity arising from local interactions in equilibrium receptor systems provides gain, but does not increase sensory performance, as measured by the signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) due to a fundamental tradeoff between gain and intrinsic noise. Here we allow sensing to be a nonequilibrium process and show that energy dissipation cannot circumvent the fundamental tradeoff, so that the SNR is still optimal for independent receptors. For systems requiring high gain, nonequilibrium 2D-coupled receptors maximize the SNR, revealing a new design principle for biological sensors.

Original languageEnglish
Article number248102
JournalPhysical Review Letters
Issue number24
StatePublished - 11 Jun 2013

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physics and Astronomy (all)


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