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The cell copying machine: How daughters look like their mothers

Tiny structures in our cells, called centrioles, control both cell division and motility. The number of these structures is highly monitored, with deviations causing infertility, microcephaly and accelerating cancer. But how do mother cells know they provide the right number of centrioles to their daughters? They do it by copying those structures only once, so that each daughter inherits one of the copies. A research team, from Instituto Gulbenkian de Ciencia (IGC; Portugal), led by Monica Bettencourt-Dias uncovered the mechanism by which the mother copies only once before it distributes it to the two daughters. This study is now published in the latest issue of the scientific journal Current Biology.

PLK4 Induced Aster Formation
PLK4 induced aster formation around centrioles.
Credit: Zitouni Sihem and Susana Montenegro Gouveia (IGC).