Who Killed Yew Case Study Answers

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Who Killed Yew Case Study Answers

This creative educational piece will use a fictional murder mystery format to explain the process of mitosis. It will present the ‘death’ of a yew tree cell as a case to be solved, using characters representing different stages of mitosis (prophase, metaphase, anaphase, telophase) and cellular components. The essay will be an engaging way to teach the concept of cell division, making the science accessible and entertaining. It will conclude with the ‘reveal’ that mitosis is a natural, life-sustaining process rather than a destructive one. More free essay examples are accessible at PapersOwl about Mitosis.

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The purpose of this case study is to find out the basic process of mitosis, which focuses on the basic cellular processes that occur during each stages of interphase, prophase, prometaphase, metaphase, anaphase, telophase and cytokinesis. Mitosis is the process of cell division. It plays an important part in the life for example to growth of tissue, repair and replace damage or death cell, regeneration or asexual reproduction.

Besides, this case is framed by solving a murder. The murder case involves the use of natural poisons derived from the Yew trees, known as Taxus baccata.

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All parts of the tree are toxic because its contain taxine which active and a complex of alkaloids. However, the leaves of the tree is more toxic than the seeds. Poisoning can occur in animals or humans that may have no symptoms and death may follow within a few hours of ingestion. But if symptoms occur, they include coldness, trembling, weakness and collapse (Christina R Wilson, John-Michael Sauer, Stephen B Hooser, 2001).

The objective of this case study also to understand and describe the function of microtubules and know what a mitotic inhibitor work is inhibiting in mitosis. In this case, paclitaxel acts as mitotic inhibitor that works by inhibiting at microtubules to prevent the cells from dividing. After ingestion, it is absorbed into the bloodstream and spreads to every tissue in the body. It then disturbs with the normal breakdown of microtubules that control the mitosis process. During prometaphase, microtubules can continue to grow and extend from centrosomes to attach to kinetochores on chromosomes. It begins to affect the function of microtubules between metaphase and anaphase. The microtubule must be shortened to attract older chromatids. When a cell does not complete all levels of mitosis, it receives a signal to undergo programmed cell death. Therefore, paclitaxel causes cell death by interfering with the usual microtubule function.

Furthermore, the discovery of paclitaxel led to the development of chemotherapeutic drugs, Taxol and this case was concluded by having to think about the correlation between toxins and chemotherapy. At the end of this case study is to understand the the basic behind chemotherapy as a cancer treatment and there may be side effects associated with chemotherapeutic treatment. (Marsh, 2016)

The intruder

The plan of this would be a type of poisoning. Actually a pecan pie has no any toxicity but after adding the seeds of taxus baccata to a pie it become a poisonous plant and toxic to humans. There are some symptoms from this intoxication which is can be an increase in heart rate, difficulty breathing, convulsions, and can effect death. The poison can be found in the Taxus baccata, Yew trees is Taxines which are type of toxic that can disrupt the process of mitosis.

The Lunch

A mitotic inhibitor is a drug that inhibits mitosis, or cell division. These drugs disrupt microtubules, which are structures that pull the chromosomes apart when a cell divides. They are used to treat cancer and (Robert C. Langdon, 2015) also called as antimitotic agent. Besides that, mitotic inhibitors are drugs which is derived from natural plant sources. They inhibit cell division or mitosis, where a single cell divides into two generally identical daughter cells. Mitotic inhibitors bind to tubulin and inhibit its polymerization into microtubules. Microtubules are structures responsible for pulling the cell apart when it divides. Mitotic inhibitors affect cancer cells more than normal cells because cancer divide, which is mitotic cell division more rapidly therefore are more susceptible to mitotic inhibition. (Micromedex, Cerner Multum, Wolters Kluwer, 2018)

The specific cytoskeletal element is most susceptible to mitotic inhibitors are in microtubules. It is because microtubules are the largest cytoskeletal filaments in cells, with a diameter of 25 nanometers. They are made out of sub units which called tubulin.



  • The nucleolus and the nuclear envelope are distinct and the chromosomes are in the form of thread like chromatin.



  • The chromosomes appear condensed, and the nuclear envelope is not apparent.



  • Spindle forms
  • Spindle microtubules become attached to the two sister chromatics of each chromosome.



  • The third phase of mitosis, the process that separates duplicated material carried in the nucleus of a parent cell into two identical daughter cells.



  • The chromosomes have separated and are moving toward the poles.

Telophase & Cytokinesis:



  • Technically the final stage of mitosis.


  • The physical process of cell division, which divides the cytoplasm of a parental cell into two daughter cells.


The Hospital

Dr. Beckham had only mild symptoms which is dizziness, nausea, racing heart beat as compared to the others because she only eat a little bite of pie because she do not like the peacans that containing the poisons. She just eat a small bite of pie in order to be polite with her friends.

The Interrogation

Based on the video (http://youtu.be/o8wVJonsnJw) state that, Yew trees are poisonous. There are a lot of case due to this tree. In short, entire plant are poisonous. Taxine which is one part of the tree is the base of paclitaxel which function as inhibitor of mitosis. Yew tree was found to have taxanes, which contains paclitaxel, a substance that distrupt mitosis and acts as an antitumor treatment. (National Center for Case Study Teaching in Science, 2016). Cancer is when cell change abnormally and divide without control. There are two types of cancer, one is benign which is tumor that not very dangerous. It is unable to spread throughout the body and maintain in one place. However, malignant cancer is dangerous since it will spread all over the body and hard to cure (Bollinger, 2018). Generally, paclitaxel are type of drug that cure cancer. So, chemotherapy is the cancer treatment that use paclitaxed as one of its main substance. Two example of organs in the body with rapidly dividing cells are skin and hair. For example, if hair cells being exposed to taxol, one will experience hair loss. It is because the main role of taxel to inhibit the process of mitosis or cell division of the tumor which also appear in the hair cells (Chemocare, 2002-2018). It is because the ingesting parts of the yew tree is function to stop cells from dividing. Meanwhile, taxol is function to stop cancer cells from dividing. In conclusion cancer patient could not be given chemotherapeutic drugs because it have many side effects that must be consider. Maybe, the patient should not depends 100% on the drugs and try the other treatment to get a better result.


In summary, this case study was to investigate about who killed yew. This case is framed around solving a murder where they occurring the poison from yew plants. This poison is very dangerous when it take in large quantity because it can prevent the process of mitosis in human body system. But for the people that have cancer it can stop the cell cancer. So, from the research this poison is very dangerous to human body because it can be death.


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Who Killed Yew Case Study Answers. (2019, Jan 02). Retrieved from https://papersowl.com/examples/who-killed-yew-mitosis-or-murder/