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Cell. 1993 Apr 9;73(1):97-108.

Multiple chromosomal populations of topoisomerase II detected in vivo by time-lapse, three-dimensional wide-field microscopy.

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Howard Hughes Medical Institute, University of California, San Francisco 94143-0448.


The localization of topoisomerase II (topo II) in vivo was studied by recording time-lapse, three-dimensional data sets of living Drosophila melanogaster embryos injected with rhodamine-labeled topo II. These images show that topo II is concentrated at specific sites within the interphase nucleus and that this localization is temporally regulated. The enzyme is not restricted to a central chromosome axis, but is distributed uniformly throughout the chromosome. During mitosis, the enzyme present in the early prophase chromosome is lost in two stages, following prophase and following anaphase. Overall, 70% of the enzyme leaves the nucleus and diffuses into the cytoplasm. The localization of the enzyme thus correlates with its role in chromosome condensation and segregation. Rather than being solely a structural protein, topo II appears to localize at the sites on the chromosome where it is required.

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