Scientists deconstruct cell division

The last step of the cell cycle is the brief but spectacularly dynamic and complicated mitosis phase, which leads to the duplication of one mother cell into two daughter cells. In mitosis, the chromosomes condense and the ...

How our cellular antennas are formed

Most of our cells contain an immobile primary cilium, an antenna used to transfer information from the surrounding environment. Some cells also have many mobile cilia that are used to generate movement. The 'skeleton' of ...

Visualizing 'unfurling' microtubule growth

Living cells depend absolutely on tubulin, a protein that forms hollow tube-like polymers, called microtubules, that form scaffolding for moving materials inside the cell. Tubulin-based microtubule scaffolding allows cells ...

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Microtubules are a component of the cytoskeleton. These rope-like polymers of tubulin can grow as long as 25 micrometers and are highly dynamic. The outer diameter of microtubule is about 25 nm. Microtubules are important for maintaining cell structure, providing platforms for intracellular transport, forming the spindle during mitosis, as well as other cellular processes. There are many proteins that bind to the microtubule, including motor proteins such as kinesin and dynein, severing proteins like katanin, and other proteins important for regulating microtubule dynamics.

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