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Klerokinesis: The New Type of Cell Division That May Prevent Cancer

Updated: Oct 20, 2019

By: Sofia Rodriguez

In 2012, a new type of cell division that is characteristically different than cytokinesis was discovered at the University of Wisconsin. Because of its low margin or error when serving as a back-up mechanism for fault cell division, making it the default for cell division could help cure certain types of cancers.

The Discovery

In 2012, the Carbone Cancer Care Center at the University of Wisconsin discovered a new form of cell division. They were studying how a cell would respond after being introduced to too many sets of chromosomes, mimicking cancer #moreisnotbetter. After collecting some results, the scientists blocked cytokinesis with a chemical to see what would happen. The result was the discovery of a process called klerokinesis, coming from the Greek root meaning “allotted inheritance.” #goodtoknowgreek

How it Works

Klerokinesis is a form of division that supplements cytokinesis through a splitting at the end of a delayed growth phase rather than at the end of mitosis. It was first observed by these scientists in trying to confirm the hypothesis of a German cell biology pioneer, Theodor Boveri #unsaidhero, which stated that aneuploidy #morelikeaNEWploidy, a condition of abnormal normal of chromosomes in a cell, would lead to uncontrolled cell division and cancer. They were researching this by looking at human retinal pigment epithelial (RPE) cells by looking in simple organisms such as slime molds. Because it is such a “primitive” method of cellular division, it is a backup mechanism in more developed and complex organisms for when all else has gone wrong within a division.

Cytokinesis is the process that splits the membrane into two identical daughter cells. It occurs during mitosis after telophase. Because of the rushed growth and replication, it is prone to genetic mutations that can lead to cancerous replication by the accumulation of carcinogens (a substance that leads to cancer.) Klerokineses allows for there to be more time and attention for the precise replication of the DNA sequence to prevent mutations in the delayed growth period. The cell becomes almost self-aware and is able to correct its own mistakes before even making them, preventing cancer.

Preventing Cancer

The reason that klerokinesis becomes so crucial to preventing certain types of cancers (such as breast and pancreatic cancers) is because klerokinesis, unlike cytokinesis, has a dependability rate of up to 99%. Klerokinesis prevents potentially cancerous cells from spreading by not allowing for them to split, being almost hyper-aware to the contents of the cell itself. Yet, by creating cells that use klerokinesis as the main form of cellular division rather than as a default that can divide and multiply healthily, it could serve as a preventative measure for certain types of cancers.

Biological Theme

The most present biological theme is Response: Feedback and Regulation. This is because a newly-discovered form of cellular division called klerokinesis serves as a “backup” #babynowbackitup for faulty divisions and preventative measure for the development of cancer. When a cell has too many chromosomes, it potentially becomes a cancer cell if it continues to normally divide through mitosis. Yet, after going through the process of klerokinesis, the cells end up producing 2 normal, functional daughter cell. Although articles do not specify how exactly this occurs, it can be inferred that the cell seems to passively “realize” #epiphone that it is chromosomally abnormal, and therefore potentially cancerous. It then reacts to the environment in which it is in or has created it by adjusting how it will divide the cytoplasm and membrane: cytokinesis or klerokinesis. If something is wrong within the nucleus, then it chooses to go through klerokinesis to adjust and fix the issue to create two healthy daughter cells. If nothing is wrong, it goes through cytokinesis as its default and also creates two healthy daughter cells. The impact of this is to try to manipulate cells so that klerokinesis becomes a default for cellular division, to reduce the chances of certain types of cancer by having too many sets of chromosomes by even 14% in breast cancers and 35% in pancreatic cancers. #wecanwin


The Autopedia. (2019). What is KLEROKINESIS? What does KLEROKINESIS mean? KLEROKINESIS meaning, definition & explanation. Retrieved from

Krzyzanowski, P. (2012). A new term to remember: "klerokinesis." Retrieved from

Land, D. (2012). New form of cell division found. Retrieved from

Reporter, S. (2012). Cell Division May Prevent Cancer. Retrieved from


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