Navigation Links
National Academy of Sciences honors geneticist and biologist Sue Biggins
Date:1/8/2013

SEATTLE Sue Biggins, Ph.D., a geneticist and biologist at Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, has received the National Academy of Sciences Award in Molecular Biology. Sponsored by Pfizer Inc., the award consists of a $25,000 prize in recognition of a recent notable discovery by a young scientist.

She was among 18 honored by NAS this year for outstanding achievements in a wide range of fields spanning the physical, biological and social sciences.

Biggins, a member of the Fred Hutch Basic Sciences Division, was recognized for her work in understanding the mechanics of cell division. She recently made an important contribution to the field by figuring out how to isolate the specialized cellular machines known as kinetochores that allow cells to separate and accurately distribute their chromosomes.

For decades, researchers have tried and failed to isolate or assemble whole, functioning kinetochores to better understand how they help chromosomes separate and end up in the right daughter cells. If this goes awry, entire chromosomes are gained or lost, a hallmark of most cancers, birth defects and miscarriages.

Biggins' team, stepping away from genetic methods and borrowing from biochemists' playbook, for the first time succeed in separating the kinetochores from dividing yeast cells and studying them in test tubes.

During cell division, kinetochores act like handles on chromosomes and are under tremendous pressure as fibers pull on these handles to move the chromosomes within the dividing cell. If chromosomes fall off in the midst of this process, they don't end up in the daughter cell. Biggins and colleagues, in collaboration with the laboratory of Chip Asbury, Ph.D., in the Physiology and Biophysics Department at the University of Washington, found the harder the kinetochores are pulled, the harder they attach, like a finger-trap toy. This counterintuitive characteristic explains why the process works correctly so often.

What's true in yeast is also true in human cells. Because kinetochores play such an important role in chromosome segregation, knowing how they work turns them into very large therapeutic targets. If research leads to drugs that disrupt kinetochores from doing their job in unhealthy cells, they would be unable to divide and propagate at all, which potentially could stop a disease such as cancer.


'/>"/>

Contact: Kristen Woodward
kwoodwar@fhcrc.org
206-667-5095
Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. International study suggests human genes influence gut microbial composition
2. January 2013 story tips from Oak Ridge National Laboratory
3. President Obama honors MU researcher with National Medal of Science
4. Spanish consumers prefer national fish
5. Barbara Gilchrest named 2012 Charter Fellow by National Academy of Inventors
6. National Academy of Inventors names four UT Arlington professors as charter fellows
7. LSUHSCs Weiss chosen to help set national eye policy, research
8. U of M to lead international virtual institute studying climatic and human effects on Earth
9. International Drug & Explosives Detection Company IDenta Corp. Article to be Published by Zillion International
10. Elk bones tell stories of life, death, and habitat use at Yellowstone National Park
11. National Geographic unveils new phase of genographic project
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:3/29/2017)... the health IT company that operates the largest health ... today announced a Series B investment from BlueCross BlueShield ... investment and acquisition accelerates higi,s strategy to create the ... activities through the collection and workflow integration of ambient ... secures data today on behalf of over 36 million ...
(Date:3/27/2017)... CENTRE, N.Y. , March 27, 2017 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ ... Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS) Analytics ... Outpatient EMR Adoption Model sm . In addition, ... 12% of U.S. hospitals using an electronic medical ... CHS for its high level of EMR usage ...
(Date:3/24/2017)... , Mar 24, 2017 Research and ... Access System Market Analysis & Trends - Industry Forecast to 2025" ... ... to grow at a CAGR of around 15.1% over the next ... This industry report analyzes the market estimates and forecasts for all ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:8/15/2017)... ... 15, 2017 , ... Nanomedical Diagnostics , a cutting-edge ... the launch of the new NHS Agile biosensor chip . The new ... a wide range of molecules, including small and large molecules, peptides, proteins, and ...
(Date:8/15/2017)... ... August 15, 2017 , ... Coffea arabica ... biotic and abiotic factors. During this educational webinar, participants will learn about the ... as gain a better understanding of how genomics is important for coffee breeding ...
(Date:8/11/2017)... ROCKVILLE, Md. , Aug. 11, 2017 ... in a New York Times article regarding ... 9.2 billion, according to Kalorama Information.  The ... an App for That"  used information ... Remote Patient Monitoring & Telemedicine Market  (Sleep, ...
(Date:8/10/2017)... Philadelphia, PA (PRWEB) , ... August 09, 2017 ... ... back to the classroom next week-- as students. From August 14th through the ... Institute. The institute, which debuted in the summer of 2016, provides Philadelphia-based middle ...
Breaking Biology Technology: