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Title: Spindle Assembly and Mitosis in Plants
In contrast to well-studied fungal and animal cells, plant cells assemble bipolar spindles that exhibit a great deal of plasticity in the absence of structurally defined microtubule-organizing centers like the centrosome. While plants employ some evolutionarily conserved proteins to regulate spindle morphogenesis and remodeling, many essential spindle assembly factors found in vertebrates are either missing or not required for producing the plant bipolar microtubule array. Plants also produce proteins distantly related to their fungal and animal counterparts to regulate critical events such as the spindle assembly checkpoint. Plant spindle assembly initiates with microtubule nucleation on the nuclear envelope followed by bipolarization into the prophase spindle. After nuclear envelope breakdown, kinetochore fibers are assembled and unified into the spindle apparatus with convergent poles. Of note, compared to fungal and animal systems, relatively little is known about how plant cells remodel the spindle microtubule array during anaphase. Uncovering mitotic functions of novel proteins for spindle assembly in plants will illuminate both common and divergent mechanisms employed by different eukaryotic organisms to segregate genetic materials.  more » « less
Award ID(s):
Author(s) / Creator(s):
Date Published:
Journal Name:
Annual Review of Plant Biology
Page Range / eLocation ID:
227 to 254
Medium: X
Sponsoring Org:
National Science Foundation
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