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EMBO Rep. 2002 Jun;3(6):543-50. Epub 2002 May 24.

STAG2 and Rad21 mammalian mitotic cohesins are implicated in meiosis.

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Department of Immunology and Oncology, Centro Nacional de Biotecnología/CSIC, UAM Campus de Cantoblanco, Madrid E-28049, Spain.


STAG/SA proteins are specific cohesin complex subunits that maintain sister chromatid cohesion in mitosis and meiosis. Two members of this family, STAG1/SA1 and STAG2/SA2,double dagger are classified as mitotic cohesins, as they are found in human somatic cells and in Xenopus laevis as components of the cohesin(SA1) and cohesin(SA2) complexes, in which the shared subunits are Rad21/SCC1, SMC1 and SMC3 proteins. A recently reported third family member, STAG3, is germinal cell-specific and is a subunit of the meiotic cohesin complex. To date, the meiosis-specific cohesin complex has been considered to be responsible for sister chromatid cohesion during meiosis. We studied replacement of the mitotic by the meiotic cohesin complex during mouse germinal cell maturation, and we show that mammalian STAG2 and Rad21 are also involved in several meiosis stages. Immunofluorescence results suggest that a cohesin complex containing Rad21 and STAG2 cooperates with a STAG3-specific complex to maintain sister chromatid cohesion during the diplotene stage of meiosis.

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