Article

Maternally recruited Aurora C kinase is more stable than Aurora B to support mouse oocyte maturation and early development

Department of Biology, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA 19104, USA.
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (Impact Factor: 9.81). 07/2012; 109(33):E2215-22. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1120517109
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Aurora kinases are highly conserved, essential regulators of cell division. Two Aurora kinase isoforms, A and B (AURKA and AURKB), are expressed ubiquitously in mammals, whereas a third isoform, Aurora C (AURKC), is largely restricted to germ cells. Because AURKC is very similar to AURKB, based on sequence and functional analyses, why germ cells express AURKC is unclear. We report that Aurkc(-/-) females are subfertile, and that AURKB function declines as development progresses based on increasing severity of cytokinesis failure and arrested embryonic development. Furthermore, we find that neither Aurkb nor Aurkc is expressed after the one-cell stage, and that AURKC is more stable during maturation than AURKB using fluorescently tagged reporter proteins. In addition, Aurkc mRNA is recruited during maturation. Because maturation occurs in the absence of transcription, posttranscriptional regulation of Aurkc mRNA, coupled with the greater stability of AURKC protein, provides a means to ensure sufficient Aurora kinase activity, despite loss of AURKB, to support both meiotic and early embryonic cell divisions. These findings suggest a model for the presence of AURKC in oocytes: that AURKC compensates for loss of AURKB through differences in both message recruitment and protein stability.

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