biosights: November 24, 2014 - Dynein helps centrioles stick together

submitted by: JCB
Dynein has numerous functions in mitosis, but the function of the motor complex's light intermediate chains is poorly understood. Jones et al. reveal that dynein's light intermediate chains are required to maintain centrosome integrity during mitosis, preventing the premature separation of mother-daughter centrioles and the formation of multipolar spindles. This biosights episode presents the paper by Jones et al. from the November 24, 2014, issue of The Journal of Cell Biology and includes...

Faster, more sensitive imaging of live cells – Biotech’s future

submitted by: nsf

Developing new drugs means researchers must observe how cells react to those drugs over extended periods of time. NSF-funded small business Phi Optics has developed an optical microscope that lets scientists do just that -- study living cells in their natural environments. Catalin Chiritescu talked about how the technology works at the 2014 BIO International Convention.

biosights: October 27, 2014 - Epithelial cells make changes at the top

submitted by: JCB
The apical surfaces of polarized epithelia are covered by short, actin-rich protrusions called microvilli, but what happens to these structures when cells detach from a monolayer during development or disease is unclear. Klingner et al. reveal that non-confluent epithelial cells form longer, more dynamic microvilli on their apical surface that connect to a cortical actomyosin network. This biosights episode presents the paper by Klingner et al. from the October 13, 2014, issue of The Journal...

biosights: September 29, 2014 - Cdc42 prompts a change of heart

submitted by: JCB
The Drosophila heart is a simple tubular structure with a central lumen. Vogler et al. reveal that the small GTPase Cdc42 and actin-nucleating formin proteins promote lumen formation by regulating the dynamics of non-muscle myosin in cardioblasts during heart morphogenesis. This biosights episode presents the paper by Vogler et al. from the September 29, 2014, issue of The Journal of Cell Biology and includes an interview with two of the paper's authors, Georg Vogler and Rolf Bodmer...

biosights: September 1, 2014 - Deploying exosomes in a battle of the sexes

submitted by: JCB
The paired accessory glands of male Drosophila secrete multiple signaling factors into the seminal fluid that promote reproductive success by altering the recipient female's physiology and behavior. Corrigan et al. reveal that the secondary cells of accessory glands secrete membrane-bound exosomes in a BMP-dependent manner that, after being transferred into the female reproductive tract, inhibit the female's inclination to re-mate with other male flies. This biosights episode presents the...

biosights: August 4, 2014 - Rok keeps its finger on the pulse of apical constriction

submitted by: JCB
Early in Drosophila embryogenesis, contractile pulses of myosin assembly and disassembly constrict the apical domains of a group of epithelial cells to drive their invagination into a ventral furrow. Vasquez et al. reveal that Rho kinase and myosin phosphatase dynamically regulate these myosin pulses and that the stepwise constriction resulting from this helps maintain tissue integrity during epithelial invagination. This biosights episode presents the paper by Vasquez et al. from the August...