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Gene. 1999 Jun 11;233(1-2):39-47.

Characterization of the components of the putative mammalian sister chromatid cohesion complex.

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Unit of Chromosome Structure and Function, NIH, NICHD, Laboratory of Molecular Embryology, 18T Library Drive, room 106, Bethesda, MD 20892-5430, USA.


Establishing and maintaining proper sister chromatid cohesion throughout the cell cycle are essential for maintaining genome integrity. To understand how sister chromatid cohesion occurs in mammals, we have cloned and characterized mouse orthologs of proteins known to be involved in sister chromatid cohesion in other organisms. The cDNAs for the mouse orthologs of SMC1S.c. and SMC3S.c. , mSMCB and mSMCD respectively, were cloned, and the corresponding transcripts and proteins were characterized. mSMCB and mSMCD are transcribed at similar levels in adult mouse tissues except in testis, which has an excess of mSMCD transcripts. The mSMCB and mSMCD proteins, as well as the PW29 protein, a mouse homolog of Mcd1pS.c./Rad21S.p., form a complex similar to cohesin in X. laevis. mSMCB, mSMCD and PW29 protein levels show no significant cell-cycle dependence. The bulk of the mSMCB, mSMCD and PW29 proteins undergo redistribution from the chromosome vicinity to the cytoplasm during prometaphase and back to the chromatin in telophase. This pattern of intracellular localization suggests a complex role for this group of SMC proteins in chromosome dynamics. The PW29 protein and PCNA, which have both been implicated in sister chromatid cohesion, do not colocalize, indicating that these proteins may not function in the same cohesion pathway. Overexpression of a PW29-GFP fusion protein in mouse fibroblasts leads to inhibition of proliferation, implicating this protein and its complex with SMC proteins in the control of mitotic cycle progression.

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