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VOLUME 63 | ISSUE 3 | PAGE 203
Nearly spherical vesicles: shape fluctuations
Isolated vesicles with "insufficient" area have a finite surface tension and spherical shapes, whereas vesicles with "excess" area are necessarily non spherical. We consider the crossover behavior between both kinds of vesicles occurring at increasing the equilibrium area. In the mean field approximation it is a second order phase transition from the spherical to a non spherical shape. We demonstrate that fluctuations smear the transition. The critical behavior of amplitudes of fluctuations and of their characteristic times is investigated.