Key to faithful genetic inheritance is the cohesion between sister centromeres that physically links replicated sister chromatids and is then abruptly lost at the onset of anaphase. Misregulated cohesion causes aneuploidy, birth defects and perhaps initiates cancers. Loss of centromere cohesion is controlled by the spindle checkpoint and is thought to depend on a ubiquitin ligase, the Anaphase Promoting Complex/Cyclosome (APC). But here we present evidence that the APC pathway is dispensable for centromere separation at anaphase in mammals, and that anaphase proceeds in the presence of cyclin B and securin. Arm separation is perturbed in the absence of APC, compromising the fidelity of segregation, but full sister chromatid separation is achieved after a delayed anaphase. Thereafter, cells arrest terminally in telophase with high levels of cyclin B. Extending these findings we provide evidence that the spindle checkpoint regulates centromere cohesion through an APC-independent pathway. We propose that this Centromere Linkage Pathway (CLiP) is a second branch that stems from the spindle checkpoint to regulate cohesion preferentially at the centromeres and that Sgo1 is one of its components.
- Anaphase promoting complex
- Centromere cohesion