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How red blood cells nuke their nuclei
Date:2/10/2008

ons including cell division that support cell growth.

His cell-culture system began with red blood cell precursors drawn from an embryonic mouse liver (in mammalian embryos, the liver is the main producer of such cells, rather than bone marrow as in adults). The cultured cells, synchronized to develop together, divided four or five times before losing their nuclei and becoming immature red blood cells. The researchers used simple fluorescence-based assays that enabled them to probe the changes in the red blood cells through the different stages leading up to the loss of the nucleus.

The researchers plan to further investigate the entire process of red blood cell formation, which may lead to insights about genetic alterations that underlie certain red blood cell disorders.

During normal cell division, each daughter cell receives half the DNA, comments Lodish. In this case, when the red blood cell divides, one daughter cell gets all the DNA. Whats fascinating is that in this case, that daughter cell gets eaten by macrophages. Until now, scientists were unable to study these cells because they were unable to see them.


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Contact: Cristin Carr
carr@wi.mit.edu
617-324-0460
Whitehead Institute for Biomedical Research
Source:Eurekalert

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