Infoscience

Student project

Characterization of RGS-7 as a regulator of forces involved in C. elegans early cell divisions

Proper regulation of cell division is crucial to most organisms. Asymmetric division and unequal cleavage are one of the many mechanisms by which spatial regulation of cell division might be achieved. Indeed, by varying its polarity cues or by modulating the size of its daughters, a cell can potentially influence its cellular neighborhood and possibly act upon it. In C. elegans, asymmetric cell division occurs at early stages of development, and is induced by an asymmetric positioning of the spindle during mitosis. RGS-7, a member of the RGS protein family, is a potential candidate as a regulator of this process, and was shown to affect the balance of pulling forces responsible for the asymmetric position of the spindle, possibly acting through Gα and/or Gβ, which are heterotrimeric G-protein complex subunits involved in force generation in C. elegans early cell divisions. However, many aspects of the role this protein may have in this process remain to be elucidated. Using available rgs-7 mutants, RNA interference, spindle severing experiments and immunofluorescence assays, this study highlights the potential functions RGS-7 may provide to a dividing C. elegans embryo

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