College of Agricultural & Life Sciences
The mechanism of cytokinesis in higher plants is distinct from that of animal and yeast cells. In dividing plant cells, cytosol and organelles are partitioned between the two daughter cells by the formation of a new cross wall known as the cell plate. The focus of Sebastian Bednarek's research is to understand the biochemical mechanisms that direct the formation of this new membrane compartment. Suspension-cultured tobacco and Arabidopsis cells are being used as model systems to study cell plate formation because of their amenability to transgenic, biochemical and morphological studies.