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HIM-10 is required for kinetochore structure and function on Caenorhabditis elegans holocentric chromosomes.

  • Author(s): Howe, M
  • McDonald, KL
  • Albertson, DG
  • Meyer, BJ
  • et al.
Abstract

Macromolecular structures called kinetochores attach and move chromosomes within the spindle during chromosome segregation. Using electron microscopy, we identified a structure on the holocentric mitotic and meiotic chromosomes of Caenorhabditis elegans that resembles the mammalian kinetochore. This structure faces the poles on mitotic chromosomes but encircles meiotic chromosomes. Worm kinetochores require the evolutionarily conserved HIM-10 protein for their structure and function. HIM-10 localizes to the kinetochores and mediates attachment of chromosomes to the spindle. Depletion of HIM-10 disrupts kinetochore structure, causes a failure of bipolar spindle attachment, and results in chromosome nondisjunction. HIM-10 is related to the Nuf2 kinetochore proteins conserved from yeast to humans. Thus, the extended kinetochores characteristic of C. elegans holocentric chromosomes provide a guide to the structure, molecular architecture, and function of conventional kinetochores.

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