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PLoS One. 2012;7(2):e30810. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0030810. Epub 2012 Feb 23.

A mathematical model of mitotic exit in budding yeast: the role of Polo kinase.

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Department of Biological Sciences, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Blacksburg, Virginia, United States of America.


Cell cycle progression in eukaryotes is regulated by periodic activation and inactivation of a family of cyclin-dependent kinases (Cdk's). Entry into mitosis requires phosphorylation of many proteins targeted by mitotic Cdk, and exit from mitosis requires proteolysis of mitotic cyclins and dephosphorylation of their targeted proteins. Mitotic exit in budding yeast is known to involve the interplay of mitotic kinases (Cdk and Polo kinases) and phosphatases (Cdc55/PP2A and Cdc14), as well as the action of the anaphase promoting complex (APC) in degrading specific proteins in anaphase and telophase. To understand the intricacies of this mechanism, we propose a mathematical model for the molecular events during mitotic exit in budding yeast. The model captures the dynamics of this network in wild-type yeast cells and 110 mutant strains. The model clarifies the roles of Polo-like kinase (Cdc5) in the Cdc14 early anaphase release pathway and in the G-protein regulated mitotic exit network.

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