Using a permeabilised cell system and cell physiology to understand cytokinetic actomyosin ring constriction


  • Prof Mohan Balasubramanian

    University of Warwick

Project summary

Professor Balasubramanian's research focuses on understanding eukaryotic cytokinesis mechanisms. Cell division involves an actomyosin-based contractile ring – containing the contractile proteins actin and myosin – which constricts following chromosome segregation to divide one cell into two. However, very little is known about the mechanism of ring constriction and force generation. Professor Balasubramanian intends to research how the actomyosin ring constricts and generates force, and what role myosin II plays in this process. In addition, he aims to establish whether force-generation mechanisms independent of myosin II are involved in actomyosin ring constriction and cell division. Furthermore, he intends to investigate what mechanisms ensure that actomyosin ring constriction is initiated only after segregation of chromosomes. Because actomyosin contractility is central to numerous cellular processes, ranging from wound healing and cell migration to asymmetric cell division and stem cell development, this work will potentially have an impact on a broad range of fields.