Cell cycle plasticity and adaptation to unforeseen challenges

TYPEBio-Physics Seminar
Speaker:Yair Katzir
Location:Lidow 724
Remark:Ph.D. Seminar

Cell cycle regulation is at the forefront of research in many fields of biological research. Despite significant advances in deciphering the components and autonomous interactions of the cell cycle network, two basic issues remain largely open: its plasticity - the flexibility to respond to environmental stresses and accommodate internal perturbations, and its interface with the other intracellular processes. We show that the cell-cycle network can stand severe perturbations and support cell adaptation to severe unforeseen challenges.

By rewiring the genome of yeast cells, placing an essential metabolic gene under the exclusive regulation of different cell cycle promoters, we were able to present the rewired cells with an unforeseen multitasking challenge. Our results indicate that individual cells can adapt by exploring a large search space to find a solution to a challenge, even when the challenge affects a system as tightly-regulated  as the cell cycle, and that the adapted phenotype is inherited. We also present a model allowing to explore  the influence of such a challenge on the cell cycle regulatory network.