Building Centrosomes

The centrosome undergoes massive structural and functional changes as it transitions through the cell cycle (Figure).  These changes include doubling the number of centrosomes from one to two and modulating centrosome activity (number of microtubules nucleated and anchored). These two major events are controlled by the Centriole Duplication and Centrosome Maturation cycles, respectively.

Centrosome cycle

One of our main goals is to understand how a centrosome is constructed from its individual component. With hundreds of proteins found at the centrosome, dozens of which are essential for proper centrosome function, we know relatively little about this massive organelle. We have put forward a large effort to identify direct protein-protein interaction at the centrosome. More importantly, we aim to test the importance of these interactions for centrosome, cell and organism function. To do this, we use a combination of Y2H analysis, modern molecular genetics and live cell imaging in animals to determine the role of these interactions in the Duplication and Maturation cycles.