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Mol Biol Cell. 2013 Nov;24(21):3337-49. doi: 10.1091/mbc.E13-05-0253. Epub 2013 Sep 4.

Mzt1/Tam4, a fission yeast MOZART1 homologue, is an essential component of the γ-tubulin complex and directly interacts with GCP3(Alp6).

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Department of Biochemistry, University of Leicester, Leicester LE1 9HN, United Kingdom Paterson Institute for Cancer Research, University of Manchester, Manchester M20 4BX, United Kingdom.


In humans, MOZART1 plays an essential role in mitotic spindle formation as a component of the γ-tubulin ring complex. We report that the fission yeast homologue of MOZART1, Mzt1/Tam4, is located at microtubule-organizing centers (MTOCs) and coimmunoprecipitates with γ-tubulin Gtb1 from cell extracts. We show that mzt1/tam4 is an essential gene in fission yeast, encoding a 64-amino acid peptide, depletion of which leads to aberrant microtubule structure, including malformed mitotic spindles and impaired interphase microtubule array. Mzt1/Tam4 depletion also causes cytokinesis defects, suggesting a role of the γ-tubulin complex in the regulation of cytokinesis. Yeast two-hybrid analysis shows that Mzt1/Tam4 forms a complex with Alp6, a fission yeast homologue of γ-tubulin complex protein 3 (GCP3). Biophysical methods demonstrate that there is a direct interaction between recombinant Mzt1/Tam4 and the N-terminal region of GCP3(Alp6). Together our results suggest that Mzt1/Tam4 contributes to the MTOC function through regulation of GCP3(Alp6).

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