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Dev Biol. 2000 Nov 15;227(2):661-72.

A role for cyclin J in the rapid nuclear division cycles of early Drosophila embryogenesis.

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  • 1Center for Molecular Medicine and Genetics, Wayne State University School of Medicine, Detroit, Michigan 48201, USA.

Abstract

The nuclear division cycles of early Drosophila embryogenesis have a number of unique features that distinguish them from later cell cycles. These features include the lack of some checkpoints that operate in later cell cycles, the absence of gap phases, and very rapid DNA synthesis phases. The molecular mechanisms that control these rapid nuclear division cycles are poorly understood. Here we describe analysis of cyclin J, a previously uncharacterized cyclin which has an RNA expression pattern that suggests a possible role in early embryogenesis. We show that the cyclin J protein is present in early embryos where it forms active kinase complexes with cyclin-dependent kinase (Cdk) 2. To determine whether cyclin J plays a role in controlling the early nuclear cycles we isolated peptide aptamers that specifically bind to cyclin J and inhibit its ability to activate Cdks. We injected the inhibitory aptamers into syncytial Drosophila embryos and demonstrated that they caused defects in chromosome segregation and progression through mitosis. We obtained similar results by injecting cyclin J antibodies into embryos. Our results suggest that a cyclin J-associated kinase activity is required for the early embryonic division cycles.

Copyright 2000 Academic Press.

PMID:
11071782
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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