Major Field of Interest
Mechanisms of reliable cell division
Cell division is a highly orchestrated process. Both daughter cells need to obtain a precise copy of the genetic information and of all other cellular material that they need to survive. Thousands of proteins are involved in the process with hundreds being important regulators. We want to understand how such a complex event can be reliably executed, despite fluctuations in cellular composition ('noise') and variation in the cell environment. We want to know whether cellular design principles resemble or differ from the principles that are implemented in man-made systems to achieve reliability. Because cell division is so central to life, much of the regulation is preserved throughout evolution. We use the unicellular eukaryote Schizosaccharomyces pombe (fission yeast) as a model organism and combine genetic techniques, advanced fluorescence microscopy, proteomics and computational modeling to explore the mechanisms of reliable cell division.