BMSE & QBio Joint Seminar - Dan Needleman: Physical Aspects of Mitotic Spindle Assembly

Event Date: 

Wednesday, January 7, 2015 - 11:00am

Event Location: 

  • KITP Main Seminar Room
  • Kohn Hall

Event Contact: 


Dan Needleman, FAS Center for Systems Biology, SEAS & MCB, Harvard University


The spindle is a complex assembly of microtubules, motors, and other associated proteins, which segregates chromosomes during cell division. In metaphase, the spindle exists in a steady-state with a constant flux of molecules and energy continuously modifying and maintaining its architecture.  While many of the individual components of the spindle have been studied in detail, it is still unclear how these molecular constituents self-organize into this structure.  I will present our work on the use of quantitative experiments and theory to characterize the constituents of the spindle/in situ/  and to understand how their collective behaviors give rise to the assembly, morphology, and dynamics of the spindle.