Kinetochore-microtubule interactions: the means to the end

Curr Opin Cell Biol. 2008 Feb;20(1):53-63. doi: 10.1016/ Epub 2008 Jan 7.


Kinetochores are proteinaceous complexes containing dozens of components; they are assembled at centromeric DNA regions and provide the major microtubule attachment site on chromosomes during cell division. Recent studies have defined the kinetochore components comprising the direct interface with spindle microtubules, primarily through structural and functional analysis of the Ndc80 and Dam1 complexes. These studies have facilitated our understanding of how kinetochores remain attached to the end of dynamic microtubules and how proper orientation of a kinetochore-microtubule attachment is promoted on the mitotic spindle. In this article, we review these recent studies and summarize their key findings.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Humans
  • Kinetochores / metabolism*
  • Kinetochores / ultrastructure
  • Microtubules / metabolism*
  • Microtubules / ultrastructure
  • Molecular Motor Proteins / metabolism
  • Neoplasm Proteins / chemistry
  • Neoplasm Proteins / metabolism
  • Neoplasm Proteins / ultrastructure
  • Nuclear Proteins / chemistry
  • Nuclear Proteins / metabolism
  • Signal Transduction


  • Molecular Motor Proteins
  • Neoplasm Proteins
  • Nuclear Proteins