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Mitotic Centromere–associated Kinesin Is Important For Anaphase Chromosome Segregation

Todd Maney, Andrew W. Hunter, Mike Wagenbach, Linda Wordeman

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Mitotic centromere–associated kinesin (MCAK) is recruited to the centromere at prophase and remains centromere associated until after telophase. MCAK is a homodimer that is encoded by a single gene and has no associated subunits. A motorless version of MCAK that binds centromeres but not microtubules disrupts chromosome segregation during anaphase. Antisense-induced depletion of MCAK results in the same defect. MCAK overexpression induces centromere-independent bundling and eventual loss of spindle microtubule polymer suggesting that centromere-associated bundling and/or depolymerization activity is required for anaphase. Live cell imaging indicates that MCAK may be required to coordinate the onset of sister centromere separation.