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Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2018, 19(3), 733;

Insights into the Mechanisms of Chloroplast Division

Department of Science, College of Science, Ibaraki University, Ibaraki 310-8512, Japan
Received: 28 January 2018 / Revised: 28 February 2018 / Accepted: 1 March 2018 / Published: 4 March 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Chloroplast)
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The endosymbiosis of a free-living cyanobacterium into an ancestral eukaryote led to the evolution of the chloroplast (plastid) more than one billion years ago. Given their independent origins, plastid proliferation is restricted to the binary fission of pre-existing plastids within a cell. In the last 25 years, the structure of the supramolecular machinery regulating plastid division has been discovered, and some of its component proteins identified. More recently, isolated plastid-division machineries have been examined to elucidate their structural and mechanistic details. Furthermore, complex studies have revealed how the plastid-division machinery morphologically transforms during plastid division, and which of its component proteins play a critical role in generating the contractile force. Identifying the three-dimensional structures and putative functional domains of the component proteins has given us hints about the mechanisms driving the machinery. Surprisingly, the mechanisms driving plastid division resemble those of mitochondrial division, indicating that these division machineries likely developed from the same evolutionary origin, providing a key insight into how endosymbiotic organelles were established. These findings have opened new avenues of research into organelle proliferation mechanisms and the evolution of organelles. View Full-Text
Keywords: chloroplast division; mitochondrial division; endosymbiotic organelle; FtsZ; dynamin-related protein; glycosyltransferase protein chloroplast division; mitochondrial division; endosymbiotic organelle; FtsZ; dynamin-related protein; glycosyltransferase protein

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Yoshida, Y. Insights into the Mechanisms of Chloroplast Division. Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2018, 19, 733.

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