The complex events of mitosis rely on precise timing and on immaculate preparation for their success, but the G2/M transition in the plant cell cycle is currently steeped in controversy and alternative models.
In this brief review, the regulation of the G2/M transition in plants is commented on. The extent to which the G2/M transition is phosphoregulated by WEE1 kinase and CDC25 phosphatase, as exemplified in yeasts and animals, is discussed together with an alternative model that excludes these proteins from this transition. Arabidopsis T-DNA insertional lines for WEE1 and CDC25 that develop normally prompted the latter model. An argument is then presented that environmental stress is the norm for higher plants in temperate conditions. If so, the repressive role that WEE1 has under checkpoint conditions might be part of the normal cell cycle for many proliferative plant cells. Arabidopsis CDC25 can function as either a phosphatase or an arsenate reductase and recent evidence suggests that cdc25 knockouts are hypersensitive to hydroxyurea, a drug that induces the DNA-replication checkpoint. That other data show a null response of these knockouts to hydroxyurea leads to an airing of the controversy surrounding the enigmatic plant CDC25 at the G2/M transition.
Arabidopsis thaliana; cell-cycle checkpoints; CDC25 phosphatase; cyclin-dependent kinases; G2/M; WEE1 kinase
In the fission yeast Schizosaccharomyces pombe, the protein kinase Cds1 is activated by the S–M replication checkpoint that prevents mitosis when DNA is incompletely replicated. Cds1 is proposed to regulate Wee1 and Mik1, two tyrosine kinases that inhibit the mitotic kinase Cdc2. Here, we present evidence from in vivo and in vitro studies, which indicates that Cds1 also inhibits Cdc25, the phosphatase that activates Cdc2. In an in vivo assay that measures the rate at which Cdc25 catalyzes mitosis, Cds1 contributed to a mitotic delay imposed by the S–M replication checkpoint. Cds1 also inhibited Cdc25-dependent activation of Cdc2 in vitro. Chk1, a protein kinase that is required for the G2–M damage checkpoint that prevents mitosis while DNA is being repaired, also inhibited Cdc25 in the in vitro assay. In vitro, Cds1 and Chk1 phosphorylated Cdc25 predominantly on serine-99. The Cdc25 alanine-99 mutation partially impaired the S–M replication and G2–M damage checkpoints in vivo. Thus, Cds1 and Chk1 seem to act in different checkpoint responses to regulate Cdc25 by similar mechanisms.
Nucleolar release of Cdc14 phosphatases allows them access to substrates. Multiple kinases directly affect the Clp1/Cdc14 phosphostate and the nucleolar to nucleoplasmic transition of Clp1 in fission yeast upon genotoxic stress. In addition, Clp1 regulates its own nucleolar sequestration by antagonizing a subset of these networks.
The Cdc14 phosphatase family antagonizes Cdk1 phosphorylation and is important for mitotic exit. To access their substrates, Cdc14 phosphatases are released from nucleolar sequestration during mitosis. Clp1/Flp1, the Schizosaccharomyces pombe Cdc14 orthologue, and Cdc14B, a mammalian orthologue, also exit the nucleolus during interphase upon DNA replication stress or damage, respectively, implicating Cdc14 phosphatases in the response to genotoxic insults. However, a mechanistic understanding of Cdc14 phosphatase nucleolar release under these conditions is incomplete. We show here that relocalization of Clp1 during genotoxic stress is governed by complex phosphoregulation. Specifically, the Rad3 checkpoint effector kinases Cds1 and/or Chk1, the cell wall integrity mitogen-activated protein kinase Pmk1, and the cell cycle kinase Cdk1 directly phosphorylate Clp1 to promote genotoxic stress–induced nucleoplasmic accumulation. However, Cds1 and/or Chk1 phosphorylate RxxS sites preferentially upon hydroxyurea treatment, whereas Pmk1 and Cdk1 preferentially phosphorylate Clp1 TP sites upon H2O2 treatment. Abolishing both Clp1 RxxS and TP phosphosites eliminates any genotoxic stress–induced redistribution. Reciprocally, preventing dephosphorylation of Clp1 TP sites shifts the distribution of the enzyme to the nucleoplasm constitutively. This work advances our understanding of pathways influencing Clp1 localization and may provide insight into mechanisms controlling Cdc14B phosphatases in higher eukaryotes.
Movement through the cell cycle is controlled by the temporally and spatially ordered activation of cyclin-dependent kinases paired with their respective cyclin binding partners. Cell cycle events occur in a stepwise fashion and are monitored by molecular surveillance systems to ensure that each cell cycle process is appropriately completed before subsequent events are initiated. Cells prevent entry into mitosis while DNA replication is ongoing, or if DNA is damaged, via checkpoint mechanisms that inhibit the activators and activate the inhibitors of mitosis, Cdc25 and Wee1, respectively. Once DNA replication has been faithfully completed, Cdc2/Cyclin B is swiftly activated for a timely transition from interphase into mitosis. This sharp transition is propagated through both positive and negative feedback loops that impinge upon Cdc25 and Wee1 to ensure that Cdc2/Cyclin B is fully activated. Recent reports from a number of laboratories have revealed a remarkably complex network of kinases and phosphatases that coordinately control Cdc25 and Wee1, thereby precisely regulating the transition into mitosis. Although not all factors that inhibit Cdc25 have been shown to activate Wee1 and vice versa, a number of regulatory modules are clearly shared in common. Thus, studies on either the Cdc25 or Wee1-regulatory arm of the mitotic control pathway should continue to shed light on how both arms are coordinated to smoothly regulate mitotic entry.
The Cdc14p-like phosphatase Flp1p (also known as Clp1p) is regulated by cell cycle-dependent changes in its subcellular localization. Flp1p is restricted to the nucleolus and spindle pole body until prophase, when it is dispersed throughout the nucleus, mitotic spindle, and medial ring. Once released, Flp1p antagonizes Cdc2p/cyclin activity by reverting Cdc2p-phosphorylation sites on Cdc25p. On replication stress, ataxia-telangiectasia mutated/ATM/Rad3-related kinase Rad3p activates Cds1p, which phosphorylates key proteins ensuring the stability of stalled DNA replication forks. Here, we show that replication stress induces changes in the subcellular localization of Flp1p in a checkpoint-dependent manner. Active Cds1p checkpoint kinase is required to release Flp1p into the nucleus. Consistently, a Flp1p mutant (flp1-9A) lacking all potential Cds1p phosphorylation sites fails to relocate in response to replication blocks and, similarly to cells lacking flp1 (Δflp1), presents defects in checkpoint response to replication stress. Δflp1 cells accumulate reduced levels of a less active Cds1p kinase in hydroxyurea (HU), indicating that nuclear Flp1p regulates Cds1p full activation. Consistently, Δflp1 and flp1-9A have an increased percentage of Rad22p-recombination foci during HU treatment. Together, our data show that by releasing Flp1p into the nucleus Cds1p checkpoint kinase modulates its own full activation during replication stress.
WEE1 and CHK1 jointly regulate Cdk activity to prevent DNA damage during replication.
Maintenance of genome integrity is of critical importance to cells. To identify key regulators of genomic integrity, we screened a human cell line with a kinome small interfering RNA library. WEE1, a major regulator of mitotic entry, and CHK1 were among the genes identified. Both kinases are important negative regulators of CDK1 and -2. Strikingly, WEE1 depletion rapidly induced DNA damage in S phase in newly replicated DNA, which was accompanied by a marked increase in single-stranded DNA. This DNA damage is dependent on CDK1 and -2 as well as the replication proteins MCM2 and CDT1 but not CDC25A. Conversely, DNA damage after CHK1 inhibition is highly dependent on CDC25A. Furthermore, the inferior proliferation of CHK1-depleted cells is improved substantially by codepletion of CDC25A. We conclude that the mitotic kinase WEE1 and CHK1 jointly maintain balanced cellular control of Cdk activity during normal DNA replication, which is crucial to prevent the generation of harmful DNA lesions during replication.
The Cdc2 protein kinase is a key regulator of the G1-S and G2-M cell cycle transitions in the fission yeast Schizosaccharomyces pombe. The activation of Cdc2 at the G2-M transition is triggered by dephosphorylation at a conserved tyrosine residue Y15. The level of Y15 phosphorylation is controlled by the Wee1 and Mik1 protein kinases acting in opposition to the Cdc25 protein phosphatase. Here, we demonstrate that Wee1 overexpression leads to a high stoichiometry of phosphorylation at a previously undetected site in S. pombe Cdc2, T14. T14 phosphorylation was also detected in certain cell cycle mutants blocked in progression through S phase, indicating that T14 phosphorylation might normally occur at low stoichiometry during DNA replication or early G2. Strains in which the chromosomal copy of cdc2 was replaced with either a T14A or a T14S mutant allele were generated and the phenotypes of these strains are consistent with T14 phosphorylation playing an inhibitory role in the activation of Cdc2 as it does in higher eukaryotes. We have also obtained evidence that Wee1 but not Mik1 or Chk1 is required for phosphorylation at this site, that the Mik1 and Chk1 protein kinases are unable to drive T14 phosphorylation in vivo, that residue 14 phosphorylation requires previous phosphorylation at Y15, and that the T14A mutant, unlike Y15F, is recessive to wild-type Cdc2 activity. Finally, the normal duration of G2 delay after irradiation or hydroxyurea treatment in a T14A mutant strain indicates that T14 phosphorylation is not required for the DNA damage or replication checkpoint controls.
The Schizosaccharomyces pombe rad1+ gene is involved in the G2 DNA damage cell-cycle checkpoint and in coupling mitosis to completed DNA replication. It is also required for viability when the cdc17 (DNA ligase) or wee1 proteins are inactivated. We have introduced mutations into the coding regions of rad1+ by site-directed mutagenesis. The effects of these mutations on the DNA damage and DNA replication checkpoints have been analyzed, as well as their associated phenotypes in a cdc17-K42 or a wee1-50 background. For all alleles, the resistance to radiation or hydroxyurea correlates well with the degree of functioning of checkpoint pathways activated by these treatments. One mutation, rad1-S3, completely abolishes the DNA replication checkpoint while partially retaining the DNA damage checkpoint. As single mutants, the rad1-S1, rad1-S2, rad1-S5, and rad1-S6 alleles have a wild-type phenotype with respect to radiation sensitivity and checkpoint functions; however, like the rad1 null allele, the rad1-S1 and rad1-S2 alleles exhibit synthetic lethality at the restrictive temperature with the cdc17-K42 or the wee1-50 mutation. The rad1-S5 and rad1-S6 alleles allow growth at higher temperatures in a cdc17-K42 or wee1-50 background than does wild-type rad1+, and thus behave like "superalleles." In most cases both chromosomal and multi-copy episomal mutant alleles have been investigated, and the agreement between these two states is very good. We provide evidence that the functions of rad1 can be dissociated into three groups by specific mutations. Models for the action of these rad1 alleles are discussed. In addition, a putative negative regulatory domain of rad1 is identified.
G2/M checkpoints prevent mitotic entry upon DNA damage or replication inhibition by targeting the Cdc2 regulators Cdc25 and Wee1. Although Wee1 protein stability is regulated by DNA-responsive checkpoints, the vertebrate pathways controlling Wee1 degradation have not been elucidated. In budding yeast, stability of the Wee1 homologue, Swe1, is controlled by a regulatory module consisting of the proteins Hsl1 and Hsl7 (histone synthetic lethal 1 and 7), which are targeted by the morphogenesis checkpoint to prevent Swe1 degradation when budding is inhibited. We report here the identification of Xenopus Hsl7 as a positive regulator of mitosis that is controlled, instead, by an entirely distinct checkpoint, the DNA replication checkpoint. Although inhibiting Hsl7 delayed mitosis, Hsl7 overexpression overrode the replication checkpoint, accelerating Wee1 destruction. Replication checkpoint activation disrupted Hsl7–Wee1 interactions, but binding was restored by active polo-like kinase. These data establish Hsl7 as a component of the replication checkpoint and reveal that similar cell cycle control modules can be co-opted for use by distinct checkpoints in different organsims.
It has been suggested that the survival response of p53 defective tumor cells to agents that inhibit DNA replication or damage DNA may be largely dependent on cell cycle checkpoints that regulate the onset of mitosis. In human cells, the mitosis-inducing kinase CDC2/cyclin B is inhibited by phosphorylation of threonine-14 and tyrosine-15, but the roles of these phosphorylations in enforcing checkpoints is not known. We have investigated the situation in a human cervical carcinoma cell line (HeLa cells) and found that low level expression of a mutant nonphosphorylatable form of CDC2 abrogates regulation of the endogenous CDC2/cyclin B. Disruption of this pathway is toxic and renders cells highly sensitive to killing by DNA damage or by inhibition of DNA replication. These findings establish the importance of inhibitory phosphorylation of CDC2 in the survival mechanism used by human cells when exposed to some of the most common forms of anticancer therapy.
The G2 DNA damage and DNA replication checkpoints in many organisms act through the inhibitory phosphorylation of Cdc2 on tyrosine-15. This phosphorylation is catalyzed by the Wee1/Mik1 family of kinases. However, the in vivo role of these kinases in checkpoint regulation has been unclear. We show that, in the fission yeast Schizosaccharomyces pombe, Mik1 is a target of both checkpoints and that the regulation of Mik1 is, on its own, sufficient to delay mitosis in response to the checkpoints. Mik1 appears to have two roles in the DNA damage checkpoint; one in the establishment of the checkpoint and another in its maintenance. In contrast, Wee1 does not appear to be involved in the establishment of either checkpoint.
Activation of Cdc2/cyclin B kinase and entry into mitosis requires dephosphorylation of inhibitory sites on Cdc2 by Cdc25 phosphatase. In vertebrates, Cdc25C is inhibited by phosphorylation at a single site targeted by the checkpoint kinases Chk1 and Cds1/Chk2 in response to DNA damage or replication arrest. In Xenopus early embryos, the inhibitory site on Cdc25C (S287) is also phosphorylated by a distinct protein kinase that may determine the intrinsic timing of the cell cycle. We show that S287-kinase activity is repressed in extracts of unfertilized Xenopus eggs arrested in M phase but is rapidly stimulated upon release into interphase by addition of Ca2+, which mimics fertilization. S287-kinase activity is not dependent on cyclin B degradation or inactivation of Cdc2/cyclin B kinase, indicating a direct mechanism of activation by Ca2+. Indeed, inhibitor studies identify the predominant S287-kinase as Ca2+/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II (CaMKII). CaMKII phosphorylates Cdc25C efficiently on S287 in vitro and, like Chk1, is inhibited by 7-hydroxystaurosporine (UCN-01) and debromohymenialdisine, compounds that abrogate G2 arrest in somatic cells. CaMKII delays Cdc2/cyclin B activation via phosphorylation of Cdc25C at S287 in egg extracts, indicating that this pathway regulates the timing of mitosis during the early embryonic cell cycle.
We have investigated the cellular responses to hydrostatic pressure by using the fission yeast Schizosaccharomyces pombe as a model system. Exposure to sublethal levels of hydrostatic pressure resulted in G2 cell cycle delay. This delay resulted from Cdc2 tyrosine-15 (Y-15) phosphorylation, and it was abrogated by simultaneous disruption of the Cdc2 kinase regulators Cdc25 and Wee1. However, cell cycle delay was independent of the DNA damage, cytokinesis, and cell size checkpoints, suggesting a novel mechanism of Cdc2-Y15 phosphorylation in response to hydrostatic pressure. Spc1/Sty1 mitogen-activated protein (MAP) kinase, a conserved member of the eukaryotic stress-activated p38, mitogen-activated protein (MAP) kinase family, was rapidly activated after pressure stress, and it was required for cell cycle recovery under these conditions, in part through promoting polo kinase (Plo1) phosphorylation on serine 402. Moreover, the Spc1 MAP kinase pathway played a key role in maintaining cell viability under hydrostatic pressure stress through the bZip transcription factor, Atf1. Further analysis revealed that prestressing cells with heat increased barotolerance, suggesting adaptational cross-talk between these stress responses. These findings provide new insight into eukaryotic homeostasis after exposure to pressure stress.
The DNA replication checkpoint inhibits mitosis in cells that are unable to replicate their DNA, as when nucleotide biosynthesis is inhibited by hydroxyurea. In the fission yeast Schizosaccharomyces pombe, genetic evidence suggests that this checkpoint involves the inhibition of Cdc2 activity through the phosphorylation of tyrosine-15. On the contrary, a recent biochemical study indicated that Cdc2 is in an activated state during a replication checkpoint, suggesting that phosphorylation of Cdc2 on tyrosine-15 is not part of the replication checkpoint mechanism. We have undertaken biochemical and genetic studies to resolve this controversy. We report that the DNA replication checkpoint in S. pombe is abrogated in cells that carry the allele cdc2-Y15F, expressing an unphosphorylatable form of Cdc2. Furthermore, Cdc2 isolated from replication checkpoint-arrested cells can be activated in vitro by Cdc25, the tyrosine phosphatase responsible for dephosphorylating Cdc2 in vivo, to the same extent as Cdc2 isolated from cdc25ts-blocked cells, indicating that hydroxyurea treatment causes Cdc2 activity to be maintained at a low level that is insufficient to induce mitosis. These studies show that inhibitory tyrosine-15 phosphorylation of Cdc2 is essential for the DNA replication checkpoint and suggests that Cdc25, and/or one or both of Wee1 and Mik1, the tyrosine kinases that phosphorylate Cdc2, are regulated by the replication checkpoint.
Proliferating eukaryotic cells possess checkpoint mechanisms that block cell division in the presence of unreplicated or damaged DNA. Using cell-free extracts from Xenopus eggs, we have investigated the mechanisms underlying the inability of a recombinant Cdc2/cyclin B complex to induce mitosis in the presence of incompletely replicated DNA. We found that the activities of the kinases and phosphatases that regulate the major phosphorylation sites on Cdc2 (e.g., tyrosine 15, threonine 14, and threonine 161) are not altered significantly under conditions where Xenopus extracts remain stably arrested in interphase due to the presence of the replication inhibitor aphidicolin. However, at threshold concentrations, a Cdc2/cyclin B complex containing a mutant Cdc2 subunit that cannot be phosphorylated on either tyrosine 15 or threonine 14 displays a markedly reduced capacity to induce mitosis in the presence of aphidicolin. This observation indicates that the replication checkpoint in Xenopus egg extracts functions without the inhibitory tyrosine and threonine phosphorylation of Cdc2. We provide evidence that the checkpoint-dependent suppression of the Cdc2/cyclin B complex involves a titratable inhibitor that is regulated by the presence of unreplicated DNA.
Cyclin-dependent kinases (Cdk) and their counteracting phosphatases are key regulators of cell cycle progression. In yeasts, the Cdc14 family of phosphatases promotes exit from mitosis and progression through cytokinesis by reversing phosphorylation of Cdk1 substrates. In vertebrates, CDC14 paralogs, CDC14A and CDC14B, have so far been implicated in processes ranging from DNA damage repair, meiosis, centrosome duplication to ciliogenesis. However, the question of whether CDC14 paralogs can functionally compensate for each other has yet to be addressed. Here, using antisense morpholino oligonucleotides to inhibit Cdc14A1 function, we observed that Cdc14A1 depleted zebrafish embryos displayed ventrally curved body and left-right asymmetry defects, similarly to Cdc14B deficient embryos and zebrafish mutants with cilia defects. Accordingly, we found that Cdc14A1, like Cdc14B, plays a role in ciliogenesis in the Kupffer’s vesicle (KV) and other ciliated tissues, and can do so independently of its function in cell cycle. Furthermore, we observed reciprocal suppression of KV cilia length defects of Cdc14A1 and Cdc14B deficient embryos by cdc14b and cdc14a1 RNAs, respectively. Together, these studies demonstrate for the first time that Cdc14A and Cdc14B have overlapping functions in the ciliogenesis process during zebrafish development.
Cell cycle; Ciliogenesis; Left-Right asymmetry; Kupffer’s vesicle
Entry into mitosis is catalyzed by cdc2 kinase. Previous work identified the cdc2-activating phosphatase cdc25C and the cdc2-inhibitory kinase wee1 as targets of the incomplete replication-induced kinase Chk1. Further work led to the model that checkpoint kinases block mitotic entry by inhibiting cdc25C through phosphorylation on Ser287 and activating wee1 through phosphorylation on Ser549. However, almost all conclusions underlying this idea were drawn from work using recombinant proteins. Here, we report that in the early Xenopus egg cell cycles, phosphorylation of endogenous cdc25C Ser287 is normally high during interphase and shows no obvious increase after checkpoint activation. By contrast, endogenous wee1 Ser549 phosphorylation is low during interphase and increases after activation of either the DNA damage or replication checkpoints; this is accompanied by a slight increase in wee1 kinase activity. Blocking mitotic entry by adding the catalytic subunit of PKA also results in increased wee1 Ser549 phosphorylation and maintenance of cdc25C Ser287 phosphorylation. These results argue that in response to checkpoint activation, endogenous wee1 is indeed a critical responder that functions by repressing the cdc2-cdc25C positive feedback loop. Surprisingly, endogenous wee1 Ser549 phosphorylation is highest during mitosis just after the peak of cdc2 activity. Treatments that block inactivation of cdc2 result in further increases in wee1 Ser549 phosphorylation, suggesting a previously unsuspected role for wee1 in mitosis.
Cdc14A phosphatase regulates Wee1 kinase through dephosphorylation of two Cdk phosphorylation sites in its regulatory domain, Ser-123 and -139, both involved in the degradation of Wee1 at the entry into mitosis. In this way, Cdc14A interferes with the negative feedback loop between Wee1 and Cdk1 to regulate the mitotic switch.
The activity of Cdk1–cyclin B1 mitotic complexes is regulated by the balance between the counteracting activities of Wee1/Myt1 kinases and Cdc25 phosphatases. These kinases and phosphatases must be strictly regulated to ensure proper mitotic timing. One masterpiece of this regulatory network is Cdk1, which promotes Cdc25 activity and suppresses inhibitory Wee1/Myt1 kinases through direct phosphorylation. The Cdk1-dependent phosphorylation of Wee1 primes phosphorylation by additional kinases such as Plk1, triggering Wee1 degradation at the onset of mitosis. Here we report that Cdc14A plays an important role in the regulation of Wee1 stability. Depletion of Cdc14A results in a significant reduction in Wee1 protein levels. Cdc14A binds to Wee1 at its amino-terminal domain and reverses CDK-mediated Wee1 phosphorylation. In particular, we found that Cdc14A inhibits Wee1 degradation through the dephosphorylation of Ser-123 and Ser-139 residues. Thus the lack of phosphorylation of these two residues prevents the interaction with Plk1 and the consequent efficient Wee1 degradation at the onset of mitosis. These data support the hypothesis that Cdc14A counteracts Cdk1–cyclin B1 activity through Wee1 dephosphorylation.
Cdc2–Cyclin B, the protein kinase that catalyzes the onset of mitosis, is subject to multiple forms of regulation. In the fission yeast Schizosaccharomyces pombe and most other species, a key mode of Cdc2–Cyclin B regulation is the inhibitory phosphorylation of Cdc2 on tyrosine-15. This phosphorylation is catalyzed by the protein kinases Wee1 and Mik1 and removed by the phosphatase Cdc25. These proteins are also regulated, a notable example being the inhibition of Wee1 by the protein kinase Nim1/Cdr1. The temperature-sensitive mutation cdc25–22 is synthetic lethal with nim1/cdr1 mutations, suggesting that a synthetic lethal genetic screen could be used to identify novel mitotic regulators. Here we describe that such a screen has identified cdr2+, a gene that has an important role in the mitotic control. Cdr2 is a 775 amino acid protein kinase that is closely related to Nim1 and mitotic control proteins in budding yeast. Deletion of cdr2 causes a G2-M delay that is more severe than that caused by nim1/cdr1 mutations. Genetic studies are consistent with a model in which Cdr2 negatively regulates Wee1. This model is supported by experiments showing that Cdr2 associates with the N-terminal regulatory domain of Wee1 in cell lysates and phosphorylates Wee1 in vitro. Thus, Cdr2 is a novel mitotic control protein that appears to regulate Wee1.
CDC25B phosphatase is a cell cycle regulator that plays a critical role in checkpoint control. Up-regulation of CDC25B expression has been documented in a variety of human cancers, however, the relationships with the alteration of the molecular mechanisms that lead to oncogenesis still remain unclear. To address this issue we have investigated, in model cell lines, the consequences of unscheduled and elevated CDC25B levels.
We report that increased CDC25B expression leads to DNA damage in the absence of genotoxic treatment. H2AX phosphorylation is detected in S-phase cells and requires active replication. We also report that CDC25B expression impairs DNA replication and results in an increased recruitment of the CDC45 replication factor onto chromatin. Finally, we observed chromosomal aberrations that are also enhanced upon CDC25B expression.
Overall, our results demonstrate that a moderate and unscheduled increase in CDC25B level, as observed in a number of human tumours, is sufficient to overcome the S-phase checkpoint efficiency thus leading to replicative stress and genomic instability.
Cdc7 kinase is a key regulator of DNA replication and has an important role in the cellular DNA damage response by controlling checkpoint signaling and cell survival. Yet, how the activity of Cdc7 kinase is regulated is poorly understood. In silico analysis identified microRNA-29 (miR-29)-binding sites in the 3′-untranslated region (UTR) of both Cdc7 and its activating subunit Dbf4. We show that miR-29a binds to Cdc7 and Dbf4 3′-UTRs and regulates kinase levels. We find that in response to DNA damage, upregulation of Cdc7 kinase correlates with a downregulation in miR-29a. Enforced miR-29a expression prevents the accumulation of Cdc7 in response to the environmental genotoxin, benzo[a]pyrene dihydrodiol epoxide (BPDE) present in cigarette smoke, resulting in aberrant checkpoint signaling and increased cell lethality. As BPDE sensitivity was rescued by overexpression of miRNA-resistant Cdc7/Dbf4, we propose that Cdc7 kinase is an important target of miR-29a in determining cell survival from genotoxic stress caused by this environmental toxin.
protein kinase; DNA damage; genotoxic stress; S-phase; microRNA
The cyclin-dependent protein kinase (CDK) encoded by CDC28 is the master regulator of cell division in the budding yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae. By mechanisms that, for the most part, remain to be delineated, Cdc28 activity controls the timing of mitotic commitment, bud initiation, DNA replication, spindle formation, and chromosome separation. Environmental stimuli and progress through the cell cycle are monitored through checkpoint mechanisms that influence Cdc28 activity at key cell cycle stages. A vast body of information concerning how Cdc28 activity is timed and coordinated with various mitotic events has accrued. This article reviews that literature. Following an introduction to the properties of CDKs common to many eukaryotic species, the key influences on Cdc28 activity—cyclin-CKI binding and phosphorylation-dephosphorylation events—are examined. The processes controlling the abundance and activity of key Cdc28 regulators, especially transcriptional and proteolytic mechanisms, are then discussed in detail. Finally, the mechanisms by which environmental stimuli influence Cdc28 activity are summarized.
We studied the function of the cyclin-dependent kinase Cdc28 (Cdk1) in the DNA damage response and maintenance of genome stability using Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Reduced Cdc28 activity sensitizes cells to chronic DNA damage, but Cdc28 is not required for cell viability upon acute exposure to DNA-damaging agents. Cdc28 is also not required for activation of the DNA damage and replication checkpoints. Chemical–genetic analysis reveals that CDC28 functions in an extensive network of pathways involved in maintenance of genome stability, including homologous recombination, sister chromatid cohesion, the spindle checkpoint, postreplication repair, and telomere maintenance. In addition, Cdc28 and Mre11 appear to cooperate to prevent mitotic catastrophe after DNA replication arrest. We show that reduced Cdc28 activity results in suppression of gross chromosomal rearrangements (GCRs), indicating that Cdc28 is required for formation or recovery of GCRs. Thus, we conclude that Cdc28 functions in a genetic network that supports cell viability during DNA damage while promoting the formation of GCRs.
In Schizosaccharomyces pombe the onset of mitosis is regulated by a network of protein kinases and phosphatases. The M-phase inducing Cdc2-Cdc13 cyclin-dependent kinase is inhibited by Wee1 tyrosine kinase and activated by Cdc25 phosphatase. Wee1 is negatively regulated by Nim1 protein kinase. Here, we describe investigations aimed at better understanding the role of Nim1 in the mitotic control. The most important finding to emerge from these studies is that Wee1 and Nim1 have different patterns of intracellular localization. Immunofluorescence confocal microscopy has revealed that Nim1 is localized in the cytoplasm, whereas it substrate Wee1 is predominantly localized in the nucleus. Previous studies showed that the Cdc2-Cdc13 complex is located in the nucleus. Diversion of Nim1 to the nucleus, accomplished by addition of the SV40 nuclear localization signal, caused the advancement of M, confirming that Nim1 has restricted access to Wee1 in vivo. We propose that the intracellular distribution of Nim1 and Wee1 may serve to coordinate the regulation of nuclear Cdc2-Cdc13 with cytoplasmic growth.
The DNA replication checkpoint couples the onset of mitosis with the completion of S phase. It is clear that in the fission yeast Schizosaccharomyces pombe, operation of this checkpoint requires maintenance of the inhibitory tyrosyl phosphorylation of Cdc2. Cdc25 phosphatase induces mitosis by dephosphorylating tyrosine 15 of Cdc2. In this report, Cdc25 is shown to accumulate to a very high level in cells arrested in S. This shows that mechanisms which modulate the abundance of Cdc25 are unconnected to the DNA replication checkpoint. Using a Cdc2/cyclin B activation assay, we found that Cdc25 activity increased approximately 10-fold during transit through M phase. Cdc25 was activated by phosphorylations that were dependent on Cdc2 activity in vivo. Cdc25 activation was suppressed in cells arrested in G1 and S. However, Cdc25 was more highly modified and appeared to be somewhat more active in S than in G1. This finding might be connected to the fact that progression from G1 to S increases the likelihood that constitutive Cdc25 overproduction will cause inappropriate mitosis.