Division in bacteria is determined by hyperstructure dynamics and membrane domains

Vic Norris, Itzhak Fishov

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


No consensus exists for the nature of the mechanism responsible for creating the division site in the right place at the right time in bacteria. We have proposed that this mechanism depends on hyperstructures which constitute an intermediate level of organisation in cells. Non-equilibrium hyperstructures comprise the genes, mRNA, proteins and lipids required
for a particular function, such as cell division, and certain of them assemble and disassemble during the cell cycle. We review the evidence for the hypotheses that, firstly, cell division involves proteolipid domains in the cytoplasmic membrane surrounding the nucleoids, secondly, these domains form part of hyperstructures and, thirdly, the key protein in cell division, FtsZ, is sequestered and released by glycolytic hyperstructures. We suggest experiments to test these hypotheses including those based on secondary ion mass spectrometry.
Original languageEnglish GB
Pages (from-to)29-37
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Biological Physics and Chemistry
StatePublished - 2001


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