Structure and Organization of the Living Mitotic Spindle of Haemanthus Endosperm

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Science  04 Feb 1966:
Vol. 151, Issue 3710, pp. 572-574
DOI: 10.1126/science.151.3710.572


New details of mitotic spindle structures in the endosperm of Haemanthus katherinae (Bak) have been demonstrated by differential interference microscopy. Spindle fibers are clearly seen in the living spindle extending from the kinetochores to the polar region. Individual spindle fibers consist of a bundle of smaller filaments which diverge slightly from the kinetochore and intermingle with filaments from other spindle fibers as they approach the polar region. The degree of intermingling increases during metaphase and anaphase. The chromosomes stop moving when the spindle fibers are still 5 to 10microns long; then the fibers disappear. These observations explain some aspects of spindle movements which were difficult to reconcile with earlier concepts of spindle organization.