Analysis of Polo-like kinase Cdc5 in the meiosis recombination checkpoint

Maria G. Iacovella, Catherine N. Daly, Jamie Sioux Kelly, Adriana J. Michielsen, Rosemary K. Clyne

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


In meiosis, accumulation of recombination intermediates or defects in chromosome synapsis trigger checkpoint-mediated arrest in prophase I. Such 'checkpoints' are important surveillance mechanisms that ensure temporal dependence of cell cycle events. The budding yeast polo-like kinase, Cdc5, has been identified as a key regulator of the meiosis I chromosome segregation pattern. Here we have analysed the role of Cdc5 in the recombination checkpoint and observed that polo-like kinase is not required for checkpoint activation in yeast meiosis. Surprisingly, depletion of CDC5 in the Δrad17 checkpoint-defective background resulted in nuclear fragmentation to levels even higher than that observed in Δdmc1 Δrad17 cells that bypass the checkpoint arrest despite accumulating DNA double-strand breaks. The spindle morphology of Cdc5-depleted cells included short, thick metaphase I spindles in mononucleate cells and disassembled spindles in binucleate and tetranucleate cells, although this phenotype does not appear to be the cause of the nuclear fragmentation. An exaggeration of chromosome synapsis defects occurred in Cdc5-depleted Δrad17 cells and may contribute to the nuclear fragmentation phenotype. The analysis also uncovered a role for Cdc5 in maintaining spindle integrity in Δdmc1 Δrad17 cells. Further analysis confirmed that adaptation to DNA damage does occur in meiosis and that CDC5 is required for this process. the cdc5-ad mutation that renders cells unable to adapt to DNA damage in mitosis did not affect checkpoint adaptation in meiosis, indicating that the mechanisms of checkpoint adaptation in mitosis and meiosis are not fully conserved.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1182-1193
Number of pages12
JournalCell Cycle
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Mar 15 2010


  • Adaptation
  • Cdc5
  • Meiosis
  • Polo-like kinase
  • Recombination checkpoint
  • Spindle integrity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cell Biology
  • Molecular Biology
  • Developmental Biology


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