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A central event in the eukaryotic cell cycle is the decision to commence DNA replication (S phase). Strict controls normally operate to prevent repeated rounds of DNA replication without intervening mitoses ("endoreplication") or initiation of mitosis before DNA is fully replicated ("mitotic catastrophe"). Some of the genetic interactions involved in these controls have recently been identified in yeast. From this evidence we propose a molecular mechanism of "Start" control in Schizosaccharomyces pombe. Using established principles of biochemical kinetics, we compare the properties of this model in detail with the observed behavior of various mutant strains of fission yeast: wee1(-) (size control at Start), cdc13Delta and rum1(OP) (endoreplication), and wee1(-) rum1Delta (rapid division cycles of diminishing cell size). We discuss essential features of the mechanism that are responsible for characteristic properties of Start control in fission yeast, to expose our proposal to crucial experimental tests.

Type

Journal article

Journal

Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A

Publication Date

1997

Volume

94

Pages

9147 - 9152

Keywords

*DNA Replication DNA, Fungal/*genetics *Models, Genetic *Models, Theoretical Schizosaccharomyces/*genetics