5 years ago

How Kinetochore Architecture Shapes the Mechanisms of Its Function

How Kinetochore Architecture Shapes the Mechanisms of Its Function
Alexander A. Kukreja, Ajit P. Joglekar


The eukaryotic kinetochore is a sophisticated multi-protein machine that segregates chromosomes during cell division. To ensure accurate chromosome segregation, it performs three major functions using disparate molecular mechanisms. It operates a mechanosensitive signaling cascade known as the spindle assembly checkpoint (SAC) to detect and signal the lack of attachment to spindle microtubules, and delay anaphase onset in response. In addition, after attaching to spindle microtubules, the kinetochore generates the force necessary to move chromosomes. Finally, if the two sister kinetochores on a chromosome are both attached to microtubules emanating from the same spindle pole, they activate another mechanosensitive mechanism to correct the monopolar attachments. All three of these functions maintain genome stability during cell division. The outlines of the biochemical activities responsible for these functions are now available. How the kinetochore integrates the underlying molecular mechanisms is still being elucidated. In this Review, we discuss how the nanoscale protein organization in the kinetochore, which we refer to as kinetochore ‘architecture', organizes its biochemical activities to facilitate the realization and integration of emergent mechanisms underlying its three major functions. For this discussion, we will use the relatively simple budding yeast kinetochore as a model, and extrapolate insights gained from this model to elucidate functional roles of the architecture of the much more complex human kinetochore.

Publisher URL: http://www.cell.com/current-biology/fulltext/S0960-9822(17)30713-3

DOI: 10.1016/j.cub.2017.06.012

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