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Surface membrane changes during cell division

Cell division involves the coordinated changes of the different cell components. A European project focused on the less studied changes of the cell surface membrane during mitosis.
Surface membrane changes during cell division
During mitosis cells transiently lose adherence and round up. After completion of division, the daughter cells spread to regain their interphase morphology. These kind of transitional changes happen in cultured cells as well as in vivo in the tissues.

Cell surface morphology undergoes reshaping at the onset of mitosis and these biochemical changes are likely to be critical for better understanding of tissue development. The research of the EU-funded MCS (Mammalian cell surface reorganization during cell division) project was dedicated to the analyses of the cell-cycle dependent changes in cell surface biochemistry.

Researchers applied mass spectrometry and quantitative proteomic analysis to examine cell cycle dependent biochemical changes in the membrane. Using membrane-impermeable biotin labelling, they successfully isolated the cell surface proteins and analysed changes between interphase and mitosis. 660 cell surface and cell surface associated proteins were identified, and of those, 64 proteins were reproducibly enriched during mitosis. Data demonstrated that the adhesion molecules represented most of the proteins whose cell-surface exposure changes during mitosis progression.

Two members of the cadherin adhesion protein family, the so-called procadherins – PCDH 7 and PCDH1, were upregulated at the beginning of mitosis. Researchers discovered that these molecules are required for the development of mitotic cell rounding pressure. The procadherins RNAi knockdown revealed a slowdown in the dynamics of mitotic cell rounding.

Project researchers initiated the expansion of the analysis to other cell surface proteins identified in the proteomic screen. Investigation of the cell surface biochemical changes has opened new directions in mitosis research.

Related information


Cell division, cell surface membrane, mitosis, MCS, proteomic, procadherins
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