Kerry Bloom, "The Function of a Chromatin Spring in Mitosis"

Jan 14, 2013 (Mon) | 4:00 PM -6:00 PM
393 Serra Mall, Herrin T-175 : Stanford, CA

The physical properties of a long-chain polymer such as DNA and its organization inside the cell contribute in fundamental ways to replication, repair, transcription and chromosome segregation. DNA and the unique chromatin organization at the centromere function as a mechanical spring in mitosis. We apply principles of polymer physics to understand how chromatin architecture (such as DNA wrapping around nucleosomes, looping and catenation) contributes to faithful chromosome segregation. Cohesin and condensin together with pericentric chromatin constitute a molecular spring that functions to counterbalance the microtubule extensional force in mitosis. We present experimental and modeling evidence for a non-linear spring that accurately recapitulates in vivo chromatin and spindle dynamics.

Department:  Biology

Contact: Maria Magana-Lopez | 650-723-2414 | mmagana@stanford.edu

Presenter(s):

  • Kerry Bloom University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill