To divide, or not to divide? That is the question..
Our bodies are build out of trillions of cells. But in the beginning there was only one. It divided to give rise to another two cells, which later became four and so it went. In order to divide, each cell has to undergo a strict order of events called the cell cycle. But.. Division is not the only fate for cells. They can also decide to exit the cell cycle and stop dividing. This state is called quiescence. In fact, an adult human body consists mostly of such quiescent cells. Not much is known though about how cells decide between continuous proliferation and exit from the cell cycle. Our lab sets out to discover more about how cells figure out which direction to take and what goes wrong if this decision cannot be made anymore, e.g. in cancer.
What are the signals that cell integrate while asking "to divide or not to divide" and how can this decision be controlled and manipulated in our favour?- this in turn are our questions.