RNA Therapeutics Institute Publications


Divide and differentiate: CDK/Cyclins and the art of development

UMMS Affiliation

RNA Therapeutics Institute

Publication Date


Document Type



Biochemistry, Biophysics, and Structural Biology | Cell and Developmental Biology | Genetics and Genomics | Therapeutics


The elegant choreography of metazoan development demands exquisite regulation of cell-division timing, orientation, and asymmetry. In this review, we discuss studies in Drosophila and C. elegans that reveal how the cell cycle machinery, comprised of cyclin-dependent kinase (CDK) and cyclins functions as a master regulator of development. We provide examples of how CDK/cyclins: (1) regulate the asymmetric localization and timely destruction of cell fate determinants; (2) couple signaling to the control of cell division orientation; and (3) maintain mitotic zones for stem cell proliferation. These studies illustrate how the core cell cycle machinery should be viewed not merely as an engine that drives the cell cycle forward, but rather as a dynamic regulator that integrates the cell-division cycle with cellular differentiation, ensuring the coherent and faithful execution of developmental programs.

DOI of Published Version



Cell Cycle. 2014;13(9):1384-91. doi: 10.4161/cc.28656. Epub 2014 Mar 26. Link to article on publisher's site

Journal/Book/Conference Title

Cell cycle (Georgetown, Tex.)

Related Resources

Link to Article in PubMed

PubMed ID