Editors' ChoiceCell Division

Crossing over to let go

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Science  14 Oct 2016:
Vol. 354, Issue 6309, pp. 193
DOI: 10.1126/science.354.6309.193-a

Crossovers help ensure that chromosomes segregate properly during meiosis.

CREDIT: TIM VERNON/SCIENCE SOURCE

Eukaryotic cells package their genomes into chromosomes, and when they divide, they deliver a complete set of chromosomes to each daughter cell. During meiosis (the cell division that creates germ cells), “DNA crossovers” hold homologous chromosomes together, which helps to ensure that they segregate correctly. Studying worms, Machovina et al. show that cells carefully monitor how these crossovers form. The presence of a crossover strengthens the protein complex that holds the two homologous chromosomes together. Failure to form a crossover weakens the protein complex until a crossover can occur.

Curr. Biol. 10.1016/j.cub.2016.09.007 (2016).

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