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chromosome

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3 June 2022 he internal structure of a mitotic chromosome is shown with colourful threads representing DNA, one of which is shown being packaged into loops by the condensin protein complex. The background shows mitotic chromosomes in the cellular space

Shaping up the genome for cell division

Science Researchers have discovered the mechanism by which a family of DNA motor proteins packages loosely arranged strands of DNA into compact individual chromosomes during cell division.

2022

science

28 April 2020

Dancing chromosomes

Picture of the week In human cells, the genetic material is packaged into 23 different DNA molecules, the chromosomes. Each chromosome is present in two copies, one inherited from the paternal sperm, and the other from the maternal egg. During most of the cell’s life, chromosomes take the shape of long,…

2020

picture-of-the-week

5 February 2020

Chromothripsis in human cancer

Science Researchers at Harvard Medical School and EMBL-EBI have carried out the largest analysis across cancer types of the newly discovered mutational phenomenon chromothripsis.

2020

science

17 December 2019

Reshaping our DNA

Picture of the week DNA is present in each cell of our body. If all the DNA from one human cell was removed and aligned in a single strand, it would in theory add up to a total length of about two metres. In order to fit into the nucleus of a cell, DNA has to be compressed by […]

2019

picture-of-the-week

15 July 2019 The pyramids represent chromatin domains in the wild-type situation. The reflection in the water below represents the rearrangements in the mutant fruit fly chromosomes. At first glance the (regulatory) landscapes look very similar, but there are lots of changes to the topology, and yet these have little impact on the nature of the landscape (gene expression). IMAGE: Beata Edyta Mierzwa in collaboration with EMBL.

Rearranging chromosomes

Science Does rearranging chromosomes affect their function? EMBL scientists reveal uncoupling of 3D chromatin organisation and gene expression.

2019

science

18 August 2011 Circling chromosomes. Chromosomes (blue) form a ‘belt’ around the centre of the spindle (green), discovered by the EMBL scientists.

Fishing games gone wrong

Science When an egg cell is being formed, the cellular machinery which separates chromosomes is extremely imprecise at fishing them out of the cell’s interior, scientists at the European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL) in Heidelberg, Germany, have discovered. The unexpected degree of trial-and-error…

2011

science

17 June 2011 Condensin loops around several strands of DNA, keeping it coiled up and easier to transport. (Artistic impression) Image credits: EMBL/ P. Riedinger

Keeping it together

Science As any rock-climber knows, trailing a long length of rope behind you is not easy. A dangling length of rope is unwieldy and hard to manoeuvre, and can get tangled up or stuck on an outcropping. Cells face the same problem when dragging chromosomes apart during cell division. The chromosomes are…

2011

science

20 March 2011

The informant: a jumping gene

Science Scientists at the European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL) in Heidelberg, Germany, have developed a new method for studying gene regulation, by employing a jumping gene as an informant. Published online today in Nature Genetics, the new method is called GROMIT. It enables researchers to…

2011

science

30 May 2008

X chromosome exposed

Science Researchers from the European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL) in Heidelberg, Germany, and the EMBL-European Bioinformatics Institute (EMBL-EBI) in Hinxton, UK, have revealed new insights into how sex chromosomes are regulated. A chromatin modifying enzyme helps compensate for the fact that…

2008

science

9 August 2007

A unique arrangement for egg cell division

Science Which genes are passed on from mother to child is decided very early on during the maturation of the egg cell in the ovary. In a cell division process that is unique to egg cells, half of the chromosomes are eliminated from the egg before it is fertilised. Using a powerful microscope, researchers…

2007

science

10 June 2007

Researchers shed light on shrinking of chromosomes

Science A human cell contains an enormous 1.8 metres of DNA partitioned into 46 chromosomes. These have to be copied and distributed equally into two daughter cells at every division. Condensation, the shortening of chromosomes, allows the cell to handle such huge amounts of genetic material during cell…

2007

science

16 March 2006

A balancing act between the sexes

Science Recent research at the European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL) reveals new insights into how cells achieve equality between the sexes. A new link discovered between the membrane surrounding the nucleus and the male X-chromosome in fruit flies may play a crucial role in determining how active…

2006

science

13 July 2005

Actin moves chromosomes

Science Microtubules need a helping hand to find chromosomes in dividing egg cells, scientists have discovered. Although it was generally accepted that microtubules act alone as the cellular ropes to pull chromosomes into place, a new study by researchers at the European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL)…

2005

science

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