The spindle is a microtubule-based structure that facilitates chromosome segregation during mitosis and meiosis. Spindle assembly from dynamic microtubule building blocks is a major challenge for the dividing cell and a process that critically requires microtubule motors. In this review we focus on the mechanisms by which microtubule motors shape the spindle. Specifically, we address how motors are thought to move and arrange microtubules to form the characteristic bipolar morphology shared by all eukaryotic spindles as well as motor-dependent mechanisms of microtubule length regulation.
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