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(1/1165) Cell cycle-dependent expression and centrosome localization of a third human aurora/Ipl1-related protein kinase, AIK3.

We earlier isolated cDNAs encoding novel human protein kinases AIK and AIK2 sharing high amino acid sequence identities with Drosophila Aurora and Saccharomyces cerevisiae Ipl1 kinases whose mutations cause abnormal chromosome segregation. In the present study, a third human cDNA (AIK3) highly homologous to aurora/IPL1 was isolated, and the nucleotide sequence was determined. This cDNA encodes 309 amino acids with a predicted molecular mass of 35.9 kDa. C-terminal kinase domain of AIK3 protein shares high amino acid sequence identities with those of Aurora/Ipl1 family protein kinases including human AIK, human AIK2, Xenopus pEg2, Drosophila Aurora, and yeast Ipl1, whereas the N-terminal domain of AIK3 protein shares little homology with any other Aurora/Ipl1 family members. AIK3 gene was assigned to human chromosome 19q13.43, which is a frequently deleted or rearranged region in several tumor tissues, by fluorescence in situ hybridization, somatic cell hybrid panel, and radiation hybrid cell panel. Northern blot analyses revealed that AIK3 expression was limited to testis. The expression levels of AIK3 in several cancer cell lines were elevated severalfold compared with normal fibroblasts. In HeLa cells, the endogenous AIK3 protein level is low in G1/S, accumulates during G2/M, and reduces after mitosis. Immunofluorescence studies using a specific antibody have shown that AIK3 is localized to centrosome during mitosis from anaphase to cytokinesis. These results suggest that AIK3 may play a role(s) in centrosome function at later stages of mitosis.  (+info)

(2/1165) The conserved protein kinase Ipl1 regulates microtubule binding to kinetochores in budding yeast.

Chromosome segregation depends on kinetochores, the structures that mediate chromosome attachment to the mitotic spindle. We isolated mutants in IPL1, which encodes a protein kinase, in a screen for budding yeast mutants that have defects in sister chromatid separation and segregation. Cytological tests show that ipl1 mutants can separate sister chromatids but are defective in chromosome segregation. Kinetochores assembled in extracts from ipl1 mutants show altered binding to microtubules. Ipl1p phosphorylates the kinetochore component Ndc10p in vitro and we propose that Ipl1p regulates kinetochore function via Ndc10p phosphorylation. Ipl1p localizes to the mitotic spindle and its levels are regulated during the cell cycle. This pattern of localization and regulation is similar to that of Ipl1p homologs in higher eukaryotes, such as the human aurora2 protein. Because aurora2 has been implicated in oncogenesis, defects in kinetochore function may contribute to genetic instability in human tumors.  (+info)

(3/1165) Novel protein kinases Ark1p and Prk1p associate with and regulate the cortical actin cytoskeleton in budding yeast.

Ark1p (actin regulating kinase 1) was identified as a yeast protein that binds to Sla2p, an evolutionarily conserved cortical actin cytoskeleton protein. Ark1p and a second yeast protein, Prk1p, contain NH2-terminal kinase domains that are 70% identical. Together with six other putative kinases from a number of organisms, these proteins define a new protein kinase family that we have named the Ark family. Lack of both Ark1p and Prk1p resulted in the formation of large cytoplasmic actin clumps and severe defects in cell growth. These defects were rescued by wild-type, but not by kinase-dead versions of the proteins. Elevated levels of either Ark1p or Prk1p caused a number of actin and cell morphological defects that were not observed when the kinase-dead versions were overexpressed instead. Ark1p and Prk1p were shown to localize to actin cortical patches, making these two kinases the first signaling proteins demonstrated to be patch components. These results suggest that Ark1p and Prk1p may be downstream effectors of signaling pathways that control actin patch organization and function. Furthermore, results of double-mutant analyses suggest that Ark1p and Prk1p function in overlapping but distinct pathways that regulate the cortical actin cytoskeleton.  (+info)

(4/1165) Centrosomal kinase AIK1 is overexpressed in invasive ductal carcinoma of the breast.

A centrosomal serine/threonine kinase, AIK1(3)/breast tumor amplified kinase/aurora2, which was recently identified as an oncogene, shows high amino acid identity with chromosome segregation kinases, fly Aurora, and yeast Ipl1. Immunohistochemical analyses of invasive ductal adenocarcinomas of the breast revealed that overexpression of AIK1 was observed in 94% of the cases, irrespective of the histopathological type, whereas the protein was not detected in normal ductal and lobular cells. Benign breast lesions including fibrocystic disease and fibroadenoma (epithelial components) displayed weakly detectable AIK1 expression in part of the lesions. This is the first immunohistochemical report of AIK1 expression in primary human breast carcinomas. Although the physiological function(s) of AIK1 kinase during cell division remains to be determined, the markedly high positivity of AIK1 staining in the cancer lesions suggested a possible involvement of its overexpression in the tumorigenesis of some of breast cancer cells.  (+info)

(5/1165) The Xenopus laevis aurora-related protein kinase pEg2 associates with and phosphorylates the kinesin-related protein XlEg5.

We have previously reported on the cloning of XlEg5, a Xenopus laevis kinesin-related protein from the bimC family (Le Guellec, R., Paris, J., Couturier, A., Roghi, C., and Philippe, M. (1991) Mol. Cell. Biol. 11, 3395-3408) as well as pEg2, an Aurora-related serine/threonine kinase (Roghi, C., Giet, R., Uzbekov, R., Morin, N., Chartrain, I., Le Guellec, R., Couturier, A., Doree, M., Philippe, M., and Prigent, C. (1998) J. Cell Sci. 111, 557-572). Inhibition of either XlEg5 or pEg2 activity during mitosis in Xenopus egg extract led to monopolar spindle formation. Here, we report that in Xenopus XL2 cells, pEg2 and XlEg5 are both confined to separated centrosomes in prophase, and then to the microtubule spindle poles. We also show that pEg2 co-immunoprecipitates with XlEg5 from egg extracts and XL2 cell lysates. Both proteins can directly interact in vitro, but also through the two-hybrid system. Furthermore immunoprecipitated pEg2 were found to remain active when bound to the beads and phosphorylate XlEg5 present in the precipitate. Two-dimensional mapping of XlEg5 tryptic peptides phosphorylated in vivo first confirmed that XlEg5 was phosphorylated by p34(cdc2) and next revealed that in vitro pEg2 kinase phosphorylated XlEg5 on the same stalk domain serine residue that was phosphorylated in metabolically labeled XL2 cells. The kinesin-related XlEg5 is to our knowledge the first in vivo substrate ever reported for an Aurora-related kinase.  (+info)

(6/1165) Stu-7/air-2 is a C. elegans aurora homologue essential for chromosome segregation during embryonic and post-embryonic development.

We have isolated a new sterile uncoordinated C. elegans mutant, stu-7, which is defective in post-embryonic cell divisions in a regionally-specific fashion. The anterior of the worm is relatively unaffected whereas the mid-body and/or posterior are markedly thin, often resulting in worms having a central 'waist'. We have cloned stu-7 and found that it encodes a member of the recently expanding aurora sub-family of serine/threonine kinases. Elimination of maternal as well as zygotic stu-7 expression reveals that stu-7 is essential for mitosis from the first embryonic cell cycle onwards and is required for chromosome segregation though not for centrosome separation or for setting up a bipolar spindle. Multicopy expression of stu-7 also causes mitotic defects, suggesting that the level of this protein must be tightly controlled in order to maintain genetic stability during development.  (+info)

(7/1165) Cdc20 associates with the kinase aurora2/Aik.

Cdc20/fizzy family proteins are involved in activation of the anaphase-promoting complex/cyclosome, which catalyzes the ubiquitin-dependent proteolysis of cell cycle regulatory proteins such as anaphase inhibitors and mitotic cyclins, leading to chromosome segregation and exit from mitosis. Previous work has shown that human Cdc20 (hCdc20/p55CDC) associates with one or more kinases. We report here that Cdc20-associated myelin basic protein kinase activity peaks sharply in early M phase (embryonic cells) or in G2 phase (somatic cells). In HeLa cells, Cdc20 is associated with the kinase aurora2/Aik. Aurora2/Aik is a member of the aurora/Ipl1 family of kinases that, like Cdc20, previously has been shown to be localized at mitotic spindle poles and is involved in regulating chromosome segregation and maintaining genomic stability. The demonstration that Cdc20 is associated with aurora2/Aik suggests that some function of Cdc20 is carried out or regulated through its association with aurora2/Aik.  (+info)

(8/1165) Sli15 associates with the ipl1 protein kinase to promote proper chromosome segregation in Saccharomyces cerevisiae.

The conserved Ipl1 protein kinase is essential for proper chromosome segregation and thus cell viability in the budding yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Its human homologue has been implicated in the tumorigenesis of diverse forms of cancer. We show here that sister chromatids that have separated from each other are not properly segregated to opposite poles of ipl1-2 cells. Failures in chromosome segregation are often associated with abnormal distribution of the spindle pole-associated Nuf2-GFP protein, thus suggesting a link between potential spindle pole defects and chromosome missegregation in ipl1 mutant cells. A small fraction of ipl1-2 cells also appears to be defective in nuclear migration or bipolar spindle formation. Ipl1 associates, probably directly, with the novel and essential Sli15 protein in vivo, and both proteins are localized to the mitotic spindle. Conditional sli15 mutant cells have cytological phenotypes very similar to those of ipl1 cells, and the ipl1-2 mutation exhibits synthetic lethal genetic interaction with sli15 mutations. sli15 mutant phenotype, like ipl1 mutant phenotype, is partially suppressed by perturbations that reduce protein phosphatase 1 function. These genetic and biochemical studies indicate that Sli15 associates with Ipl1 to promote its function in chromosome segregation.  (+info)