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Structure Inside Chromosomes Prevent Cell Divison Errors

A new study published in Nature Communications sheds light on the exact interaction between the crucial factors inside chromosomes that cause the formation of a protective barrier inside it. During cell division chromosomes separate into two new cells, called the daughter cells. Errors in this process can cause disease, says the research team from the University of Edinburgh.

They produced an artificial chromosome to analyze the process of cell division. They studied the crucial factors involved in cell division viz., the proteins that comprised a greater part of the chromosomal structure, and DNA fragments that enable mobilizing the process.

The team concentrated on the centromere, an area inside chromosomes which plays a central role in cell division regulation. It was found that a complicated series of steps occur leading to the formation of a barrier which blocks the centromeres from being invaded and immobilized by other areas of the chromosome. This aid in the maintenance of a fully functional centromere, thereby decreasing the chances of occurrence of errors during chromosome separation, says the team.

These findings can help in a better understanding of diseases like cancer which are triggered by cell division errors.