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74 Publications

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    10/01/07 | Three-dimensional preparation and imaging reveal intrinsic microtubule properties.
    Keller PJ, Pampaloni F, Stelzer EH
    Nature Methods. 2007 Oct;4(10):843-6. doi: 10.1038/nmeth1087

    We present an experimental investigation of microtubule dynamic instability in three dimensions, based on laser light-sheet fluorescence microscopy. We introduce three-dimensional (3D) preparation of Xenopus laevis egg extracts in Teflon-based cylinders and provide algorithms for 3D image processing. Our approach gives experimental access to the intrinsic dynamic properties of microtubules and to microtubule population statistics in single asters. We obtain evidence for a stochastic nature of microtubule pausing.

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    08/23/06 | Nud1p, the yeast homolog of Centriolin, regulates spindle pole body inheritance in meiosis.
    Gordon O, Taxis C, Keller PJ, Benjak A, Stelzer EH, Simchen G, Knop M
    The EMBO Journal. 2006 Aug 23;25(16):3856-68. doi: 10.1038/sj.emboj.7601254

    Nud1p, a protein homologous to the mammalian centrosome and midbody component Centriolin, is a component of the budding yeast spindle pole body (SPB), with roles in anchorage of microtubules and regulation of the mitotic exit network during vegetative growth. Here we analyze the function of Nud1p during yeast meiosis. We find that a nud1-2 temperature-sensitive mutant has two meiosis-related defects that reflect genetically distinct functions of Nud1p. First, the mutation affects spore formation due to its late function during spore maturation. Second, and most important, the mutant loses its ability to distinguish between the ages of the four spindle pole bodies, which normally determine which SPB would be preferentially included in the mature spores. This affects the regulation of genome inheritance in starved meiotic cells and leads to the formation of random dyads instead of non-sister dyads under these conditions. Both functions of Nud1p are connected to the ability of Spc72p to bind to the outer plaque and half-bridge (via Kar1p) of the SPB.

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    02/01/06 | Life sciences require the third dimension.
    Keller PJ, Pampaloni F, Stelzer EH
    Current Opinion in Cell Biology. 2006 Feb;18(1):117-24. doi: 10.1016/

    Novel technologies are required for three-dimensional cell biology and biophysics. By three-dimensional we refer to experimental conditions that essentially try to avoid hard and flat surfaces and favour unconstrained sample dynamics. We believe that light-sheet-based microscopes are particularly well suited to studies of sensitive three-dimensional biological systems. The application of such instruments can be illustrated with examples from the biophysics of microtubule dynamics and three-dimensional cell cultures. Our experience leads us to suggest that three-dimensional approaches reveal new aspects of a system and enable experiments to be performed in a more physiological and hence clinically more relevant context.

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    11/21/05 | Spore number control and breeding in Saccharomyces cerevisiae: a key role for a self-organizing system.
    Taxis C, Keller P, Kavagiou Z, Jensen LJ, Colombelli J, Bork P, Stelzer EH, Knop M
    The Journal of Cell Biology. 2005 Nov 21;171(4):627-40. doi: 10.1083/jcb.200507168

    Spindle pole bodies (SPBs) provide a structural basis for genome inheritance and spore formation during meiosis in yeast. Upon carbon source limitation during sporulation, the number of haploid spores formed per cell is reduced. We show that precise spore number control (SNC) fulfills two functions. SNC maximizes the production of spores (1-4) that are formed by a single cell. This is regulated by the concentration of three structural meiotic SPB components, which is dependent on available amounts of carbon source. Using experiments and computer simulation, we show that the molecular mechanism relies on a self-organizing system, which is able to generate particular patterns (different numbers of spores) in dependency on one single stimulus (gradually increasing amounts of SPB constituents). We also show that SNC enhances intratetrad mating, whereby maximal amounts of germinated spores are able to return to a diploid lifestyle without intermediary mitotic division. This is beneficial for the immediate fitness of the population of postmeiotic cells.

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