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Cell Struct Funct. 2013;38(1):21-30. Epub 2013 Jan 11.

KIFC1 is essential for bipolar spindle formation and genomic stability in the primary human fibroblast IMR-90 cell.

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  • 1Department of Biochemistry, College of Life Science and Biotechnology, Yonsei University, Seoul, Korea.


Kinesin family member C1 (KIFC1) is the only member of the minus-end-directed kinesin-14 family in human cells. In cancer cells, KIFC1 plays an essential role in bipolar spindle formation by clustering the multiple poles during mitosis. However, it has not been clearly demonstrated whether KIFC1 also functions to mediate bipolar spindle formation and to maintain genomic stability in normal cells. In this study, by using human primary lung fibroblast IMR-90 cells, we showed that KIFC1 knock-down with lentiviral KIFC1 shRNA induced 17% of cells with multiple microtubule organizing centers (MTOCs) and delayed cyclin A degradation for more than 2 hr in early mitosis. However, these cells eventually carried out mitosis, resulting in 24% of cells with lagging chromosomes and 9% of cells with micronuclei after mitosis. Karyotyping of KIFC1-depleted IMR-90 cells demonstrated that cells with various abnormal numbers of chromosomes are produced. When IMR-90 cells treated with KIFC1 or the control shRNA for 60 hr were compared, 20% less cells were observed in KIFC1-depleted cells without an obvious immediate cell death. As reported for Mad2 depletion in IMR-90 cells, KIFC1-depleted IMR-90 cells showed typical features of senescence, like senescence-associated (SA) β-galactosidase expression, when incubated 6 days or more. However, IMR-90 cells knocked down with both KIFC1 and Mad2 underwent apoptosis, suggesting that KIFC1 and Mad2 likely function in different pathways during mitosis. Taken together, we suggest that KIFC1 plays an essential role for bipolar MTOC formation and maintaining chromosomal stability in the mitosis of human primary fibroblast IMR-90.

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