Optogenetic control of cytokinesis shows that polarized trafficking governs the process

Jean A. Castillo-Badillo, Xenia Meshik, Suyash Harlalka, N. Gautam

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionpeer-review


Optogenetics allows for the study of signaling pathways during a variety of cellular processes. Here we use subcellular optogenetics to study the role of vesicular trafficking in cytokinesis. Optogenetically activating RhoA in the cell midline induces cytokinesis and intercellular bridge formation. RhoA activates the actomyosin contractility network, leading to retrograde plasma membrane flow, localized decrease in membrane tension, and increase in endocytosis at the cell middle. Endocytic vesicles and trafficking proteins localize to the intercellular bridge. Perturbation of these proteins inhibits furrow formation. Thus polarized endocytosis and exocytosis in the first steps of cytokinesis provide new membrane to the middle of the cell and allow the cell to build the cleavage furrow and intercellular bridge.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationOptogenetics and Optical Manipulation 2019
EditorsE. Duco Jansen, Samarendra K. Mohanty
ISBN (Electronic)9781510623743
StatePublished - 2019
EventOptogenetics and Optical Manipulation 2019 - San Francisco, United States
Duration: Feb 2 2019Feb 3 2019

Publication series

NameProgress in Biomedical Optics and Imaging - Proceedings of SPIE
ISSN (Print)1605-7422


ConferenceOptogenetics and Optical Manipulation 2019
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CitySan Francisco


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