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.



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 […]



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…



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