Featured in the December 16, 2009, issue of Biomedical Beat.
In this movie clip, chromosomes in a C. elegans worm look like
they're dancing as the cells start to undergo meiosis. Each cell contains
a mix of chromosomes (red) from the mother and the father that need to
match up before the cell can divide into sperm or eggs. The green areas
show where chromosomes have latched on to the nuclear wall. The cell's
cytoskeleton then leads them around the nuclear dance floor until each
mom chromosome meets its dad equivalent. When they do, they clasp themselves
together and swap a set of genes. Then they part once more. Courtesy of
the Dernburg lab, University of California, Berkeley.