Splitting cells: How a dynamic protein machinery executes 'the final cut'

Every day billions of cells die in our body and need to be replaced by newly dividing cells. Cell division is a beautifully orchestrated process that involves multiple critical steps. At the very end, “cellular abscission” splits the membrane and thereby gives birth to two daughter cells. Abscission is executed by a protein machinery named ESCRT-III. Insights into the function of ESCRT-III are also interesting for many other biological processes – as this machinery also pinches off viruses…

Every day billions of cells die in our body and need to be replaced by newly dividing cells. Cell division is a beautifully orchestrated process that involves multiple critical steps. At the very end, “cellular abscission” splits the membrane and thereby gives birth to two daughter cells. Abscission is executed by a protein machinery named ESCRT-III. Insights into the function of ESCRT-III are also interesting for many other biological processes – as this machinery also pinches off viruses…