Research Article

A liquid-like spindle domain promotes acentrosomal spindle assembly in mammalian oocytes

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Science  28 Jun 2019:
Vol. 364, Issue 6447, eaat9557
DOI: 10.1126/science.aat9557

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A new phase in egg biology

Chromosome segregation typically requires centrosomes, which generate the microtubule spindle. However, mammalian eggs build a spindle and segregate chromosomes without centrosomes. How acentrosomal spindles are organized has remained elusive. So et al. show that centrosomal and microtubule-associated proteins are repurposed into a large “liquid-like meiotic spindle domain” (LISD) in eggs. The domains localized to spindle poles and also extended to the spindle fibers that connect to kinetochores. LISDs formed by phase separation and were required for spindle assembly, serving as reservoirs that locally sequester and mobilize spindle assembly factors within the large egg cytoplasm.

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