University of Dundee

Professor Jason Swedlow FRSE

Mitotic chromosome dynamics
Professor of Quantitative Cell Biology
School of Life Sciences, University of Dundee, Dundee
Full Telephone: 
+44 (0) 1382 385819, int ext 85819


During cell division, the two copies of a cell's genetic material are completely separated and delivered to a pair of new daughter cells. Proper chromosome segregation requires the formation of correct attachments between the genetic material, assembled into chromosomes, and ends of microtubules. Our research is focussed on establishing the molecular mechanisms that mediate and monitor the correct attachment of chromosomes to microtubule at a special structure known as the kinetochore. To achieve this, we make use of advanced tools for imaging the components of cell division, especially in living cells and specialised mass spectrometry methods to probe the molecular machinery of cell division. Recently, we used these tools to discover a new protein, Bod1, that plays a critical role in the formation of correct attachments between microtubules and chromosomes by modulating the activity of Aurora B protein kinase. We recently installed a newly developed OMX microscope and are using this system to probe the inner workings of the centromere and kinetochore of the mitotic chromosome.

INCENP (red) localization in a dividing cell, also stained for microtubules (green) and DNA (blue). Click on the thumbnail to view and manipulate the image in OMERO.

Like many cell biology labs, we generate large sets of image data. To manage, analyse and understand this data, we, long with our collaborators, formed the Open Microscopy Environment ConsortiumOME develops data specificationsfile format translators and data management software for imaging applications. OME tools are used in thousands of labs around the world. For more info on OME, see the Consortium's web site.


Masuzzo, P., Martens, L., Cell Migration Workshop, P., Ampe, C., Anderson, K. I., Barry, J., De Wever, O., Debeir, O., Decaestecker, C., Dolznig, H., Friedl, P., Gaggioli, C., Geiger, B., Goldberg, I. G., Horn, E., Horwitz, R., Kam, Z., Le Devedec, S. E., Vignjevic, D. M., Moore, J., Olivo-Marin, J. C., Sahai, E., Sansone, S. A., Sanz-Moreno, V., Stromblad, S., Swedlow, J., Textor, J., Van Troys, M. and Zantl, R. (2015) An open data ecosystem for cell migration research. Trends Cell Biol. 25, 55-58
doi;  10.1016/j.tcb.2014.11.005;  View Paper

Trani, D., Nelson, S. A., Moon, B. H., Swedlow, J. J., Williams, E. M., Strawn, S. J., Appleton, P. L., Kallakury, B., Nathke, I. and Fornace, A. J., Jr. (2014) High-energy particle-induced tumorigenesis throughout the gastrointestinal tract. Radiation research. 181, 162-171
doi;  10.1667/RR13502.1;  View Paper

Patwardhan, A., Ashton, A., Brandt, R., Butcher, S., Carzaniga, R., Chiu, W., Collinson, L., Doux, P., Duke, E., Ellisman, M. H., Franken, E., Grunewald, K., Heriche, J. K., Koster, A., Kuhlbrandt, W., Lagerstedt, I., Larabell, C., Lawson, C. L., Saibil, H. R., Sanz-Garcia, E., Subramaniam, S., Verkade, P., Swedlow, J. R. and Kleywegt, G. J. (2014) A 3D cellular context for the macromolecular world. Nat Struct Mol Biol. 21, 841-845
doi;  10.1038/nsmb.2897;
Pubmed; 4346196  View Paper

Biddlestone, J., Druker, J., Shmakova, A., Ferguson, G., Swedlow, J. R. and Rocha, S. (2014) Analysis of global RNA synthesis at the single cell level following hypoxia. J Vis Exp
doi;  10.3791/51420;
Pubmed; 4184815  View Paper

Marlow VL, Porter M, Hobley L, Kiley TB, Swedlow JR, Davidson FA, Stanley-Wall, NR. (2014) DegU~P manipulates cell fate differentiation in the Bacillus subtilis biofilm.  J. Bacteriol.  196:16-27. PMID: 24123822  View Paper

Porter IM, Schleicher K, Porter M, Swedlow JR. Bod1 regulates protein phosphatase 2A at mitotic kinetochores. (2013) Nat Comms  4:2677. PMID: 24157919   View Paper

Moser SC, Bensaddek D, Ortmann B, Mudie S, Blow JJ, Lamond AI, Swedlow JR, Rocha S. (2013)  PHD1 links cell cycle progression to metabolic state through hydroxylation of the centrosomal protein Cep192. Dev Cell. 26:381-392. PMID: 23932902  View Paper

Lagerstedt I, Moore WJ, Patwardhan A, Sanz-García E, Best C, Swedlow JR, Kleywegt GJ. (2013) Web-based visualisation and analysis of 3D electron-microscopy data from EMDB and PDB.  J Struct Biol  184:173-181. PMID: 24113529  View Paper

Allan C, Burel J-M, Moore J Blackburn C, Linkert M, Loynton S, Macdonald D, Moore WJ, Neves C, Patterson A, Porter M, Tarkowska A, Loranger B, Avondo J, Lagerstedt, I, Lianas L, Leo S, Hands, K, Hay RT, Patwardhan A, Best C, Kleywegt GJ, Zanetti G and Swedlow JR. (2012) OME Remote Objects (OMERO): flexible, model-driven data management for experimental biology. Nat Methods. 9, 245-253, doi. 10.1038/nmeth.1896, PMID: 22373911  View Paper

Posch M, Khoudoli GA, Swift S, King EM, DeLuca JG, Swedlow JR (2010) Sds22 regulates aurora B activity and microtubule-kinetochore interactions at mitosis. JCB. 191:61-74 PMID: 20921135  View Paper

Linkert M, Rueden CT, Allan C, Burel J-M, Moore W, Patterson A, Loranger B, Moore J, Neves C, MacDonald D, Tarkowska A, Sticco C, Hill E, Rossner M, Eliceiri KW, Swedlow JR, (2010) Metadata matters: access to image data in the real world. 189: 777-782. PMID: 20513764 View Paper

Jaqaman K, King EM, Amaro AC, Winter JR, Dorn JF, Elliott HL, Mchedlishvili N, McClelland SE, Porter IM, Posch M, Toso A, Danuser G, McAinsh AD, Meraldi P, Swedlow JR, (2010) Kinetochore alignment within the metaphase plate is regulated by centromere stiffness and microtubule depolymerases. J. Cell Biol. 188:681-692. PMID: 20212316   View Paper

Swedlow JR, Goldberg IG, Eliceiri KW, the OME Consortium (2009) Bioimage informatics for experimental biology. Annu Rev Biophys. 38:327-346. PMID: 19416072  View Paper

Khoudoli GA, Gillespie PJ, Stewart G, Andersen JS, Swedlow JR, and Blow JJ. (2008) Temporal profiling of the chromatin proteome reveals system-wide responses to replication inhibition. Curr. Biol. 18:838-43. PMID: 18514518  View Paper

Murray, JM, Appleton PL, Swedlow JR, and Waters, J.C. (2007) Evaluating Performance in three-dimensional fluorescence microscopy. J Microsc. 228(3):390-405. PMID: 18645334   View Paper

Porter IM, McClelland S, Khoudoli GA, Hunter C, Andersen J, McAinsh AD, Blow, JJ, and Swedlow JR. (2007) Bod1, a novel kinetochore protein required for chromosome biorientation. J Cell Biol. 179(2):187-97. PMID: 17938248  View Paper

Wilcock AC, Swedlow JR, and Storey KG. (2007) Mitotic spindle orientation distinguishes stem cell and terminal modes of neuron production in the early spinal cord. Development 134:1943-1954. PMID: 17470968  View Paper

Goldberg IG, Allan C, Burel J-M, Creager D, Falconi A, Hochheiser HS, Johnston J, Mellenm J, Sorger PK, and Swedlow JR. (2005) The Open Microscopy Environment (OME) data model and XML File: open tools for informatics and quantitative analysis in biological Imaging.Genome Biol. 6:R47. PMID: 15892875  View Paper

Andrews PD, Ovechkina Y, Morrice N, Wagenbach M, Duncan K, Wordeman L, and Swedlow JR. (2004) Aurora B regulates MCAK at the mitotic centromere. Dev Cell 6:253-268. PMID: 14960279  View Paper