GSBS Student Publications


The good, the bad and the ugly: the practical consequences of centrosome amplification

Student Author(s)

Joshua J. Nordberg

GSBS Program

Cell Biology

UMMS Affiliation

Department of Cell Biology



Document Type


Medical Subject Headings

Animals; Centrosome; Humans; Mitosis; Mitotic Spindle Apparatus; Neoplasms


Cell Biology | Life Sciences | Medicine and Health Sciences


Centrosome amplification (the presence of more than two centrosomes at mitosis) is characteristic of many human cancers. Extra centrosomes can cause the assembly of multipolar spindles, which unequally distribute chromosomes to daughter cells; the resulting genetic imbalances may contribute to cellular transformation. However, this raises the question of how a population of cells with centrosome amplification can survive such chaotic mitoses without soon becoming non-viable as a result of chromosome loss. Recent observations indicate that a variety of mechanisms partially mute the practical consequences of centrosome amplification. Consequently, populations of cells propagate with good efficiency, despite centrosome amplification, yet have an elevated mitotic error rate that can fuel the evolution of the transformed state.

Rights and Permissions

Citation: Curr Opin Cell Biol. 2004 Feb;16(1):49-54. Link to article on publisher's site

DOI of Published Version


Related Resources

Link to Article in PubMed

Journal Title

Current opinion in cell biology

PubMed ID