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Cell. 2018 May 3;173(4):839-850.e18. doi: 10.1016/j.cell.2018.03.009. Epub 2018 Apr 5.

A Kinesin-14 Motor Activates Neocentromeres to Promote Meiotic Drive in Maize.

Author information

1
Department of Plant Biology, University of Georgia, Athens, GA 30602, USA; Department of Genetics, University of Georgia, Athens, GA 30602, USA. Electronic address: kdawe@uga.edu.
2
Department of Genetics, University of Georgia, Athens, GA 30602, USA.
3
Department of Plant Biology, University of Georgia, Athens, GA 30602, USA.
4
Department of Plant Sciences and Center for Population Biology, University of California, Davis, CA 95616, USA.
5
Department of Plant Sciences and Center for Population Biology, University of California, Davis, CA 95616, USA; Genome Center, University of California, Davis, CA 95616, USA.
6
Department of Crop and Soil Sciences, University of Georgia, Athens, GA 30602, USA.
7
Department of Physics, Oregon State University, Corvallis, OR 97331, USA.
8
Division of Biological Sciences, University of Missouri, Columbia, MO 65211, USA.
9
Kentucky Wesleyan College, Owensboro, KY 42301, USA.

Abstract

Maize abnormal chromosome 10 (Ab10) encodes a classic example of true meiotic drive that converts heterochromatic regions called knobs into motile neocentromeres that are preferentially transmitted to egg cells. Here, we identify a cluster of eight genes on Ab10, called the Kinesin driver (Kindr) complex, that are required for both neocentromere motility and preferential transmission. Two meiotic drive mutants that lack neocentromere activity proved to be kindr epimutants with increased DNA methylation across the entire gene cluster. RNAi of Kindr induced a third epimutant and corresponding loss of meiotic drive. Kinesin gliding assays and immunolocalization revealed that KINDR is a functional minus-end-directed kinesin that localizes specifically to knobs containing 180 bp repeats. Sequence comparisons suggest that Kindr diverged from a Kinesin-14A ancestor ∼12 mya and has driven the accumulation of > 500 Mb of knob repeats and affected the segregation of thousands of genes linked to knobs on all 10 chromosomes.

KEYWORDS:

DNA methylation; abnormal chromosome 10; epiallele; kinesin; knob; meiosis; meiotic drive; preferential segregation; siRNA; spindle

Comment in

PMID:
29628142
DOI:
10.1016/j.cell.2018.03.009
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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