The stability of solitons in biomembranes and nerves
Niels Bohr Institute, Blegdamsvej 17, DK-2100, Copenhagen Ø, Denmark
Revised: 3 March 2011
Accepted: 16 May 2011
Published online: 9 June 2011
We examine the stability of a class of solitons, obtained from a generalization of the Boussinesq equation, which have been proposed to be relevant for pulse propagation in biomembranes and nerves. These solitons are found to be stable with respect to small-amplitude fluctuations. They emerge naturally from non-solitonic initial excitations and are robust in the presence of dissipation. Solitary waves pass through each other with only minor dissipation when their amplitude is small. Large-amplitude solitons fall apart into several pulses and small-amplitude noise upon collision when the maximum density of the membrane is limited by the density of the solid phase membrane.
© EDP Sciences, SIF, Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg, 2011