Journal Club – November 2019

Cell Synthesis, Kinesin Tug-Of-War, and Diverse Yeast Mitosis

Must Read

Spontaneous Emergence Of Cell-Like Organization In Xenopus Egg Extracts

Cheng and Ferrell | Ferrell Lab | Science

The cell exhibits remarkable spatiotemporal control over its molecular constituents. Much of the cell’s internal organization was previously thought to arise from the inheritance of an already ordered state. However, in this study, Cheng and Ferrell perform an elegant experiment demonstrating the ability of cytoplasm to organize de novo based largely on microtubule polymerization dynamics and dynein-mediated transport. The authors prepare cytoplasmic frog egg extracts in alignment with commonly used methodology with one notable exception – they homogenize the extract prior to imaging. Strikingly, the thoroughly mixed cytoplasm reorganizes into cell-like compartments over the course of ~30 minutes. This self-organization occurs independently of commonly heralded factors including centrosomes, protein translation, and bulk aggregation, thereby revealing an alternative method of cellular synthesis.

Perspective Mitchison and Field

Nature Journal Anniversary

Journal Club Picks

  • Kinetochores can prompt anaphase onset with just 20% microtubule occupancy.
    Kuhn and Dumont  |  Dumont Lab  |  Journal of Cell Biology
  • A kinesin tug-of-war facilitates cargo transport in crowded cellular environments.
    Tjioe et al.  |  Selvin Lab  |  eLife
  • Marine-derived black yeasts from Woods Hole, MA show unexpected mitotic phenotypes.
    Mitchison-Field et al.  |  Field and Gladfelter Labs  |  Current Biology
  • Regrowth of severed microtubules drives an exponential increase in microtubule mass.
    Kuo et al.  |  Howard Lab  |  Biophysical Journal
  • Microtubules experience mesoscale vibrations that may contribute to dynamic instability.
    Aslam and Prodan  |  Prodan Lab  |  Journal of Physics D: Applied Physics
    Find us in the methods section!
  • Proteins on the inside of axonemal microtubule doublets repeat with a 48-nm periodicity.
    Ma et al.  |  Brown and Zhang Labs  |  Cell
  • The pool of soluble tubulin is concentrated to ~500 μM at mitotic centrosomes.
    Baumgart et al.  |  Brugués Lab  |  Journal of Cell Biology
  • Specific actin remodeling pathways are linked to memory loss and may be druggable.
    Gao et al.  |  Li Lab  |  Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
  • Mechanisms underlying spindle size scaling in egg extracts varies among frog species.
    Miller et al.  |  Heald Lab  |  Current Biology

Our opinions are our own and do not represent the views or endorsement of the authors cited.

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