Scientists have released the first imaging of the human cell, preparing the way for possible new treatments for cancer and other diseases. Mitosis is the process by which healthy human cells are divided, responsible for everything from growing a baby from an egg to fertilization, to our bodies repairing themselves.
Although the processes that go into mitosis are known, however, so far we have not seen them in action. It's an important difference, according to scientists at Allen's Institute for Cell Science, because it's only when you look at the holistic mechanism that you can start discovering how it works. ok – and how it can go from place to place.
The implications for the latter are significant. Cancer, for example, is the result of unusual cell growth. The genes regulating growth and discrimination are changed, and then those errors elaborate and eventually grow, in a chain reaction, to a more serious disease.
Allen Institute researchers have released a new Explorer, Cell Allen, a model based on data and visualization tool that shows how human cells are divided. It shows how 15 different key cellular structures change their shape, duplicate, disappear, and reinstate in human stem cells, across the five stages of cell division. In a 3D viewer, users can explore that process from all angles.
The team used images of 75 representative cells, taken from a database of nearly 40,000 conducted by the organization. Each shows a live human stem cell line, edged with genes so that the different structures shine with fluorescent tags.
“These images allow us to look directly at many different structures at the same time by placing them in the same place,” said Graham Johnson, Ph.D., Director of the Cell Animation team at the Allen Foundation. for Gell Science, for the instrument. “Now scientists can make and discuss more definite and accurate comparisons.”
Although it can occur naturally, the process of cell sharing is extremely complex. Initially, the cell repeats its chromosomes, the code that defines what the cell does. These copies are packages for two “girl” cells, along with the other internal structures. The whole thing then divides, creating – in theory – two matching cells.
A problem is that, if the duplication and division goes awful, cancer and other diseases can follow. One of the most common routes to abnormal cell growth is an incorrect division, where one girl has more chromosomes than she should, and the other is too small. In fact, seeing how that can happen, given the various play factors, has been difficult to date.
“Mitosis is central to cancer and cancer cells. So far, research on mitosis and cancer has focused mainly on chromosomes, but very few things in a cell working alone, ”Tom Misteli, Ph.D., Director of Research Center Cancer National Cancer Institute and member of one of the Scientific Sciences Advisory Councils Cell Allen said about the research. “This new tool brings the whole together, allowing researchers to connect the dots between different parts of the cell. We have not had that until now. ”
Already, the visualization tool has helped researchers identify new elements to the mitosis process. Initially, there is what they call a “trigger point” in the early pro-metase phase, where many of the 15 cellular structures are suddenly transformed. During the metaphase, meanwhile, just before the division, the inter-cellular structure organization is least varied.
It is far from this tool to new ways of treating and possibly improving or preventing cancers, of course. There will be a better understanding of how cells duplicate, and the ways things can go from its place at every stage of that process, is essential to discover new methods of dealing with some of & # 39 the most fatal diseases.