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Mitotic antipairing of homologous and sex chromosomes via spatial restriction of two haploid sets


Pairing homologous chromosomes is required for recombination. However, in nonmeiotic stages it can lead to detrimental consequences, such as allelic misregulation and genome instability, and is rare in human somatic cells. How mitotic recombination is prevented-and how genetic stability is maintained across daughter cells-is a fundamental, unanswered question. Here, we report that both human and mouse cells impede homologous chromosome pairing by keeping two haploid chromosome sets apart throughout mitosis. Four-dimensional analysis of chromosomes during cell division revealed that a haploid chromosome set resides on either side of a meridional plane, crossing two centrosomes. Simultaneous tracking of chromosome oscillation and the spindle axis, using fluorescent CENP-A and centrin1, respectively, demonstrates collective genome behavior/segregation of two haploid sets throughout mitosis. Using 3D chromosome imaging of a translocation mouse with a supernumerary chromosome, we found that this maternally derived chromosome is positioned by parental origin. These data, taken together, support the identity of haploid sets by parental origin. This haploid set-based antipairing motif is shared by multiple cell types, doubles in tetraploid cells, and is lost in a carcinoma cell line. The data support a mechanism of nuclear polarity that sequesters two haploid sets along a subcellular axis. This topological segregation of haploid sets revisits an old model/paradigm and provides implications for maintaining mitotic fidelity.

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