ESCRT-dependent control of membrane remodelling during cell division


The Endosomal Sorting Complex Required for Transport (ESCRT) proteins form an evolutionarily conserved membrane remodelling machinery. Identified originally for their role in cargo sorting and remodelling of endosomal membranes during yeast vacuolar sorting, an extensive body of work now implicates a sub-complex of this machinery (ESCRT-III), as a transplantable membrane fission machinery that is dispatched to various cellular locations to achieve a topologically unique membrane separation. Surprisingly, several ESCRT-III-regulated processes occur during cell division, when cells undergo a dramatic and co-ordinated remodelling of their membranes to allow the physical processes of division to occur. The ESCRT machinery functions in regeneration of the nuclear envelope during open mitosis and in the abscission phase of cytokinesis, where daughter cells are separated from each other in the last act of division. Roles for the ESCRT machinery in cell division are conserved as far back as Archaea, suggesting that the ancestral role of these proteins was as a membrane remodelling machinery that facilitated division and that was co-opted throughout evolution to perform a variety of other cell biological functions. Here, we will explore the function and regulation of the ESCRT machinery in cell division.

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Volume 74
Pages 50-65
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Crick authors

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