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Cell. 2010 Apr 16;141(2):268-79. doi: 10.1016/j.cell.2010.03.021.

Periodic cyclin-Cdk activity entrains an autonomous Cdc14 release oscillator.

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The Rockefeller University, 1230 York Avenue, New York, New York 10065, USA.


One oscillation of Cyclin-dependent kinase (Cdk) activity, largely driven by periodic synthesis and destruction of cyclins, is tightly coupled to a single complete eukaryotic cell division cycle. Tight linkage of different steps in diverse cell-cycle processes to Cdk activity has been proposed to explain this coupling. Here, we demonstrate an intrinsically oscillatory module controlling nucleolar release and resequestration of the Cdc14 phosphatase, which is essential for mitotic exit in budding yeast. We find that this Cdc14 release oscillator functions at constant and physiological cyclin-Cdk levels, and is therefore independent of the Cdk oscillator. However, the frequency of the release oscillator is regulated by cyclin-Cdk activity. This observation together with its mechanism suggests that the intrinsically autonomous Cdc14 release cycles are locked at once-per-cell-cycle through entrainment by the Cdk oscillator in wild-type cells. This concept may have broad implications for the structure and evolution of eukaryotic cell-cycle control.

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