Citron Kinase is a Regulator of Mitosis and Neurogenic Cytokinesis in the Neocortical Ventricular Zone


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Abstract

Successful cell division in neural progenitors in the neocortical ventricular zone (VZ), as in all dividing cells, depends critically upon coordinating chromosome segregation during mitosis with cytokinesis. This coordination further suggests that common molecular regulators may link events in mitosis with those in cytokinesis. Recent genetic evidence indicates that cytokinesis in CNS neuronal progenitors, but not in most other cell types of the body, requires the function of citron kinase. In neocortex, citron kinase is most critical for neurogenic cytokinesis. In citron kinase null mutants, a large proportion of neuronal cells within neocortex are binucleate; however, very few glial cells are binucleate. In addition, confocal time-lapse imaging of mitoses at the VZ surface shows that citron kinase is also necessary for phases of the cell cycle just prior to cytokinesis. Deficits in mitosis seen in mutants indicate aberrant mitotic spindle function, and like deficits in cytokinesis, occur in some but not all cells at the VZ surface. Citron kinase is therefore an essential multifunctional regulator of cell divisions in the VZ, and may serve to coordinate chromosome segregation with cytokinesis in neuronal precursors.

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