Send to

Choose Destination
Genetics. 1998 May;149(1):101-16.

A screen for dynein synthetic lethals in Aspergillus nidulans identifies spindle assembly checkpoint genes and other genes involved in mitosis.

Author information

Department of Pharmacology, UMDNJ-Robert Wood Johnson Medical School, Piscataway, New Jersey 08854-5635, USA.


Cytoplasmic dynein is a ubiquitously expressed microtubule motor involved in vesicle transport, mitosis, nuclear migration, and spindle orientation. In the filamentous fungus Aspergillus nidulans, inactivation of cytoplasmic dynein, although not lethal, severely impairs nuclear migration. The role of dynein in mitosis and vesicle transport in this organism is unclear. To investigate the complete range of dynein function in A. nidulans, we searched for synthetic lethal mutations that significantly reduced growth in the absence of dynein but had little effect on their own. We isolated 19 sld (synthetic lethality without dynein) mutations in nine different genes. Mutations in two genes exacerbate the nuclear migration defect seen in the absence of dynein. Mutations in six other genes, including sldA and sldB, show a strong synthetic lethal interaction with a mutation in the mitotic kinesin bimC and, thus, are likely to play a role in mitosis. Mutations in sldA and sldB also confer hypersensitivity to the microtubule-destabilizing drug benomyl. sldA and sldB were cloned by complementation of their mutant phenotypes using an A. nidulans autonomously replicating vector. Sequencing revealed homology to the spindle assembly checkpoint genes BUB1 and BUB3 from Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Genetic interaction between dynein and spindle assembly checkpoint genes, as well as other mitotic genes, indicates that A. nidulans dynein plays a role in mitosis. We suggest a model for dynein motor action in A. nidulans that can explain dynein involvement in both mitosis and nuclear distribution.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for HighWire Icon for PubMed Central
Loading ...
Support Center