The tug-of-war at the heart of cellular symmetry

Symmetry and asymmetry are fundamental properties of nature. Seen from above, butterflies have left-right symmetry, while male fiddler crabs show dramatic asymmetry. This is also the case for the fundamental units of life: ...

Molecular scissors stabilize the cell's cytoskeleton

Researchers at the Paul Scherrer Institute PSI in Villigen, Switzerland, have for the first time elucidated the structure of important enzymes in human cells that alter essential building blocks of the cellular cytoskeleton. ...

Study identifies a 'sensor' that activates cell migration

The cytoskeleton is a structure that not only helps cells maintain their shape and internal organisation, but also enables them to perform functions like movement and migration to sites far from the place where they originated. ...

Cell division in plants: How cell walls are assembled

Plant researchers at Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg (MLU) are providing new insights into basic cell division in plants. The scientists have succeeded in understanding how pivotal processes are coordinated in properly ...

Algorithms to locate centrioles in the cell

Investigators from the Neurodegenerative Diseases Research Group at the University of Extremadura are studying signaling mediated by a pathway known as planar cell polarity (PCP), which regulates the coordinated orientation ...

Newly discovered cytoskeleton helps cancer cells survive

Researchers at Lund University in Sweden have discovered a cytoskeleton which provides the structure for mitochondria, the cell's energy producers. The skeleton is necessary for the function of the mitochondria, but the researchers ...

Biochemists zero in on key molecules that enable cells to crawl

Biochemists have made a discovery that sheds light on the molecular machinery that allows some cells, such as immune cells or even malignant cancer cells in humans, to wiggle their way through tissues like organs, skin or ...

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