Moss and animals' cell division is more similar to what was previously thought

Moss and animals' cell division is more similar to what was previously thought ...

In a joint effort with Prof.Dr.Gohta Kozgunova from the University of Freiburg, researchers discovered how the mitotic apparatus was positioned in plants. Reski and his colleagues presented a study on the findings of the study.

Microtubules form a dynamic network of protein filaments that divide the chromosomes apart and divide them into two daughter cells. Here, plants and animals differ: once the spindle is formed, it remains in the same place in plant cells as in other plants. Yet, why is the mitotic spindle static in moss cells even if there is no preprophase band?

Mobile spindles previously unknown in plants

The researchers discovered that these plants fit together to form a molecular biology box of tricks: they removed five genes, revealing that they represent the animal gene of a significant in mitosis. The protein TPX2 is involved in the mitotic spindle assembly in animals.

The researchers uncovered mitosis in moss plants without the TPX2 genes. They discovered that the spindles were activated during cell division in leafy shoots known as gametophores. The spindles had never been observed before in plant cells, according to Kozgunova. As the plant developed, it resulted in bleak formations.

Tug-of-war in the cytoskeleton

The researchers investigated the cells'' actin skeleton and demonstrated that actin filaments moved the mitotic spindle. This is a sort of tug-of-war between microtubules and actin, which appears to be similar to those observed in animal cells. These findings are assisting researchers in understanding plant growth and ultimately our ability to influence it.

The recordings of the cell division were discovered at the Life Imaging Centre, a central facility of the Cluster of Excellence CIBSS Centre for Integrative Biological Signalling Studies at the University of Freiburg.

Factual overview:

  • Original publication: E. Kozgunova; M.W. Yoshida; R. Reski; G. Goshima (2022): Spindle motility skews division site determination during asymmetric cell division in Physcomitrella. Nature Communications 13,DOI: 10.1038/s41467-022-30239-1.
  • Ralf Reski has been a professor at the Faculty of Biology at the University of Freiburg since 1999. He is a founding member of the former Cluster of Excellence BIOSS Centre for Biological Signalling Studies as well as the Clusters of Excellence CIBSS - Centre for Integrative Biological Signalling Studies and livMatS - Living, Adaptive and Energy-autonomous Materials Systems.
  • Reski''''s research focuses on plant biotechnology, synthetic biology and evolutionary developmental biology.
  • A team led by Reski created the world''''s largest laboratory collection of moss species for peat management and science.(Press release)
  • In cooperation with the Georg-August University of Gottingen, Reski demonstrated for the first time a protective mechanism against cold in mosses that was previously known only in flowering plants.(Press release)
  • Reski is a member of the executive board of DataPLANT, a data management platform for plant sciences funded by the German Research Foundation (DFG).

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