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Physics Colloquium: Alex Mogilner
February 14 | 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm
Title: Rapid and accurate assembly of mitotic spindle
Abstract: Mitotic spindle is a remarkable molecular machine segregating chromosomes and positioning cytokinetic ring prior to cell division. The spindle self-assembles from centrosomes, microtubules and chromosomes very rapidly and accurately. For decades, the so-called search-and-capture model of this self-assembly was dominant. This model posited that the microtubules randomly probe the cell space until, by chance, all chromosomes are connected to the spindle. Recent data puts this model in doubt. I will show that both current data and stochastic computational model argue that a much more deterministic process of polarity sorting in a complex microtubule-motor system accounts for the rapid and accurate assembly of the spindle. Notably, both centripetal chromosome transport, and chromosome connection mechanics are the key to speed and accuracy.
Host: Julio Monti Belmonte