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Science 338 (6106): 520-524

Copyright © 2012 by the American Association for the Advancement of Science

The APC/C Inhibitor XErp1/Emi2 Is Essential for Xenopus Early Embryonic Divisions

Thomas Tischer,* Eva Hörmanseder,* Thomas U. Mayer{dagger}

Abstract: Mitotic divisions result from the oscillating activity of cyclin-dependent kinase 1 (Cdk1). Cdk1 activity is terminated by the anaphase-promoting complex/cyclosome (APC/C), a ubiquitin ligase that targets cyclin B for destruction. In somatic divisions, the early mitotic inhibitor 1 (Emi1) and the spindle assembly checkpoint (SAC) regulate cell cycle progression by inhibiting the APC/C. Early embryonic divisions lack these APC/C-inhibitory components, which raises the question of how those cycles are controlled. We found that the APC/C-inhibitory activity of XErp1 (also known as Emi2) was essential for early divisions in Xenopus embryos. Loss of XErp1 resulted in untimely destruction of APC/C substrates and embryonic lethality. XErp1’s APC/C-inhibitory function was negatively regulated by Cdk1 and positively by protein phosphatase 2A (PP2A). Thus, Cdk1 and PP2A operate at the core of early mitotic cell cycles by antagonistically controlling XErp1 activity, which results in oscillating APC/C activity.

Department of Biology and Konstanz Research School Chemical Biology, University of Konstanz, Universitätsstr. 10, 78457 Konstanz, Germany.

* These authors contributed equally to this work.

{dagger} To whom correspondence should be addressed. E-mail: thomas.u.mayer{at}uni-konstanz.de


THIS ARTICLE HAS BEEN CITED BY OTHER ARTICLES:
Modulation of cell cycle control during oocyte-to-embryo transitions.
E. Hormanseder, T. Tischer, and T. U. Mayer (2013)
EMBO J. 32, 2191-2203
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Panta rhei: The APC/C at steady state.
I. Primorac and A. Musacchio (2013)
J. Cell Biol. 201, 177-189
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