Centromeres, the DNA sections often found in the middle of chromosomes, display enormous diversity within and between species, despite having the same vital role during cell division across almost the entire tree of life. An international team of researchers has discovered that the variation in centromere DNA regions can be strikingly large even within a single species. The findings, now published in the journal Nature, shed light on the molecular mechanisms of rapid centromere evolution. We contributed to this important study of centromere diversity by cytogenetic cross-validation of sequence data. Congratulations to all co-authors!