Optimal Design of Elongating Yeast Spindles
François Nédélec (EMBL Heidelberg)
Joint seminar with LEBS Gif-sur-Yvette
SPECIAL TIME AND LOCATION
Bundles of filaments are universal elements that belong to the intracellular skeleton of eukaryotic cells. The anaphase spindle from fission yeast is an excellent example of such bundle that assembles repeatedly in the same manner at every cell division. It is also an excellent experimental system since yeast cells can easily be perturbed genetically, and their spindle is visualized using electron or light microscopy. The spindle is under compression at anaphase and based on electron tomographic reconstructions of its constituent microtubules, we calculated that the length and organization of microtubules within the fission yeast spindle are optimized to achieve maximal strength while minimizing the use of material. A combination of simulations and live cell imaging further indicated which of the properties of the microtubule cross-linkers are likely to be responsible for such a precise regulation of spindle morphology, and the synergy that exists between the cross-linkers in fission yeast.