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The Journal of Biological Chemistry
Year: 2008  |  Volume: 283  |  Issue: 27  |  Page No.: 18916 - 18925

Septin 7 Interacts with Centromere-associated Protein E and Is Required for Its Kinetochore Localization

Mei Zhu, Fengsong Wang, Feng Yan, Phil Y. Yao, Jian Du, Xinjiao Gao, Xiwei Wang, Quan Wu, Tarsha Ward, Jingjing Li, Steve Kioko, Renming Hu, Wei Xie, Xia Ding and Xuebiao Yao    

Abstract: Chromosome segregation in mitosis is orchestrated by dynamic interaction between spindle microtubules and the kinetochore. Septin (SEPT) belongs to a conserved family of polymerizing GTPases localized to the metaphase spindle during mitosis. Previous study showed that SEPT2 depletion results in chromosome mis-segregation correlated with a loss of centromere-associated protein E (CENP-E) from the kinetochores of congressing chromosomes (1). However, it has remained elusive as to whether CENP-E physically interacts with SEPT and how this interaction orchestrates chromosome segregation in mitosis. Here we show that SEPT7 is required for a stable kinetochore localization of CENP-E in HeLa and MDCK cells. SEPT7 stabilizes the kinetochore association of CENP-E by directly interacting with its C-terminal domain. The region of SEPT7 binding to CENP-E was mapped to its C-terminal domain by glutathione S-transferase pull-down and yeast two-hybrid assays. Immunofluorescence study shows that SEPT7 filaments distribute along the mitotic spindle and terminate at the kinetochore marked by CENP-E. Remarkably, suppression of synthesis of SEPT7 by small interfering RNA abrogated the localization of CENP-E to the kinetochore and caused aberrant chromosome segregation. These mitotic defects and kinetochore localization of CENP-E can be successfully rescued by introducing exogenous GFP-SEPT7 into the SEPT7-depleted cells. These SEPT7-suppressed cells display reduced tension at kinetochores of bi-orientated chromosomes and activated mitotic spindle checkpoint marked by Mad2 and BubR1 labelings on these misaligned chromosomes. These findings reveal a key role for the SEPT7-CENP-E interaction in the distribution of CENP-E to the kinetochore and achieving chromosome alignment. We propose that SEPT7 forms a link between kinetochore distribution of CENP-E and the mitotic spindle checkpoint.

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