July 18, 2024

The Amazing Cell!

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A couple of years ago, I came across a presentation given at one of the TED conferences by a Drew Berry. If I would have a guess, many non-biologists would be really bored with a talk on cell division, right? But no, not this one, it was most interesting, using computer animation, he exposed the cell division process in great detail – and made it breath taking for everyone!

You see, attached to sister chromosomes is something called the “kinetochore” which contains around 200 types of proteins but thousands in all. This little structure acts as an anchoring site for microtubules, part of the cell scaffolding. Microtubules help pull the two daughter chromosomes apart.

But the interesting part is this, the kenetochores are sending out little chemical and motor signals to indicate when the cell will divide! In fact, Drew called the kenetochore a “signal broadcasting system.”

The implications of this structure alone are astounding. Along with many other types of epigenetic information within the cell, these attachment sites hold one of the most illustrious keys to the mysterious dividing cell. One can see a designer’s creative abilities at play with structures like this. It’s mind boggling that such an elegant structure, such as this, doesn’t kindle more awe responses from people towards an amazing creator!

I would encourage you to take a look at it for yourself!

Image credit: Flicker/Mehmet Pinarci

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