Control of the mitotic cleavage plane by local epithelial topology

William T. Gibson, James H. Veldhuis, Boris Rubinstein, Heather N. Cartwright, Norbert Perrimon, G. Wayne Brodland, Radhika Nagpal, Matthew C. Gibson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

148 Scopus citations

Abstract

For nearly 150 years, it has been recognized that cell shape strongly influences the orientation of the mitotic cleavage plane (e.g.; Hofmeister, 1863). However, we still understand little about the complex interplay between cell shape and cleavage-plane orientation in epithelia, where polygonal cell geometries emerge from multiple factors, including cell packing, cell growth, and cell division itself. Here, using mechanical simulations, we show that the polygonal shapes of individual cells can systematically bias the long-axis orientations of their adjacent mitotic neighbors. Strikingly, analyses of both animal epithelia and plant epidermis confirm a robust and nearly identical correlation between local cell topology and cleavage-plane orientation in vivo. Using simple mathematics, we show that this effect derives from fundamental packing constraints. Our results suggest that local epithelial topology is a key determinant of cleavage-plane orientation, and that cleavage-plane bias may be a widespread property of polygonal cell sheets in plants and animals.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)427-438
Number of pages12
JournalCell
Volume144
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 4 2011
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)

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