Eukaryotic cell division has been an significant area of research at Newcastle University since the 1990s, with Professor Michael Whitaker's formative work on the cell cycle in sea urchin eggs, Dr Alex McDougall's studies of meiosis in ascidian and mouse eggs, and Professor Keith Jones' work on chromosome segregation in mouse oocytes. In addition, microbial cell division is a major research interest at the Centre for Bacterial Cell Biology.

More recently, Newcastle University has made a substantial investment in eukaryotic cell division research. The recruitment of Professor Jonathan Higgins from Harvard Medical School (2013), Drs Owen Davies and Josana Rodriguez from the University of Cambridge (in 2014), Professors Jane Endicott and Martin Noble from the University of Oxford (in 2011), the return of Suzanne Madgwick to the University on a Wellcome Career Re-entry Fellowship (2013), together with the existing groups of Professor Mary Herbert, Professor David Lydall, and Dr Junyong Huang, led to the founding of the Cell Division Biology Research Group in 2014.