Cell Proliferation

  • Cell proliferation refers to a process of cell growth and cell division into two daughter cells. Cell proliferation leads to an exponential increase in cell number and tissue size.
  • Both cell growth and cell division are interconnected processes (indistinguishable from each other) and are regulated by many common signaling pathways.
  • Most dividing cells undergo highly regulated and coordinated cell cycle phases after achieving a characteristic size.
  • Without proper cell growth, the cell cycle is halted at the G1 phase.
  • There are some exceptions also. Cell division can be observed in the absence of cell growth (e.g., division in a zygote) and cells can grow without undergoing cell division (e.g., neurons). 
  • The mTOR pathway is the major regulator of cell growth.
  • Growth factors and mitogens are required for cell proliferation. These factors activate PI3K and MAPK signaling pathways that drive the mammalian cells through G1 phase of the cell cycle. 
  • The cell cycle progression becomes independent of growth factors and mitogens after passing the restriction point.
  • Cell proliferation is essential for multicellular organism growth and homeostasis.
  • Dysregulation of control on cell proliferation can contribute to uncontrolled proliferation and cancer.

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