Cookies on this website

We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you click 'Accept all cookies' we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies and you won't see this message again. If you click 'Reject all non-essential cookies' only necessary cookies providing core functionality such as security, network management, and accessibility will be enabled. Click 'Find out more' for information on how to change your cookie settings.

In all eukaryotic organisms, the physical separation of two nascent cells must be coordinated with chromosome segregation and mitotic exit. In Saccharomyces cerevisiae and Schizosaccharomyces pombe this coordination depends on a number of genes that cooperate in intricate regulatory pathways termed mitotic exit network and septum initiation network, respectively. Here we have explored the function of potentially homologous genes in a metazoan organism, Caenorhabditis elegans, using RNA-mediated interference. Of all the genes tested, only depletion of CeCDC-14, the C. elegans homologue of the budding yeast dual-specificity phosphatase Cdc14p (Clp1/Flp1p in fission yeast), caused embryonic lethality. We show that CeCDC-14 is required for cytokinesis but may be dispensable for progression of the early embryonic cell cycles. In response to depletion of CeCDC-14, embryos fail to establish a central spindle, and several proteins normally found at this structure are mislocalized. CeCDC-14 itself localizes to the central spindle in anaphase and to the midbody in telophase. It colocalizes with the mitotic kinesin ZEN-4, and the two proteins depend on each other for correct localization. These findings identify the CDC14 phosphatase as an important regulator of central spindle formation and cytokinesis in a metazoan organism.

Original publication




Journal article


J Cell Biol

Publication Date





901 - 914


Anaphase, Animals, Aurora Kinases, Caenorhabditis elegans, Caenorhabditis elegans Proteins, Cell Cycle Proteins, Cell Division, Embryo, Nonmammalian, Kinesin, Phosphoprotein Phosphatases, Protein Transport, Protein Tyrosine Phosphatases, Protein-Serine-Threonine Kinases, RNA Interference, RNA, Double-Stranded, RNA, Messenger, Saccharomyces cerevisiae Proteins, Schizosaccharomyces pombe Proteins, Spindle Apparatus, Telophase, Time Factors