The human kinesin Kif18A is a motile microtubule depolymerase essential for chromosome congression.

Chemical Genetics, Independent Research Group, Department of Cell Biology, Max-Planck-Institute of Biochemistry, Am Klopferspitz 18, 82152 Martinsried, Germany.
Current Biology (Impact Factor: 9.92). 04/2007; 17(6):488-98. DOI: 10.1016/j.cub.2007.02.036
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT The accurate alignment of chromosomes at the spindle equator is fundamental for the equal distribution of the genome in mitosis and thus for the genetic integrity of eukaryotes. Although it is well established that chromosome movements are coupled to microtubule dynamics, the underlying mechanism is not well understood.
By combining RNAi-depletion experiments with in vitro biochemical assays, we demonstrate that the human kinesin Kif18A is a motile microtubule depolymerase essential for chromosome congression in mammalian tissue culture cells. We show that in vitro Kif18A is a slow plus-end-directed kinesin that possesses microtubule depolymerizing activity. Notably, Kif18A like its yeast ortholog Kip3p depolymerizes longer microtubules more quickly than shorter ones. In vivo, Kif18A accumulates in mitosis where it localizes close to the plus ends of kinetochore microtubules. The depletion of Kif18A induces aberrantly long mitotic spindles and loss of tension across sister kinetochores, resulting in the activation of the Mad2-dependent spindle-assembly checkpoint. Live-cell microscopy studies revealed that in Kif18A-depleted cells, chromosomes move at reduced speed and completely fail to align at the spindle equator.
These studies identify Kif18A as a dual-functional kinesin and a key component of chromosome congression in mammalian cells.

  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: This study aimed to investigate KIF18A expression in hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) and to determine the possibility of KIF18A expression being a biomarker in HCC diagnosis or being an independent predictor of disease-free survival (DFS) and overall survival (OS) in HCC patients underwent surgical resection. KIF18AmRNA was detected in 216 cases of HCC tissues by quantitative real-time PCR (qRT-PCR) and in 20 cases of HCC tissues by semi-quantitative RT-PCR. KIF18A protein was determined in 32 cases of HCC tissues by immunohistochemistry (IHC). The survival probability was analyzed by Kaplan-Meier method, and survival curves between groups were obtained by using the log-rank test. Independent predictors associated with DFS were analyzed with Stepwise Cox proportional hazard models. High KIF18A mRNA level was detected in 154 out of 216 (71.3%) cases of HCC. The positive rate of KIF18A expression was significantly higher in liver cancer tissues than that in adjacent normal liver tissues (ANLT) from HCC patients [65.6% (21 of 32) vs. 25.0% (8 of 32), P=0.001]. The KIF18A expression level had positive relevance to the alpha-fetoprotein (AFP) (≥200 ng/ml), tumor size (≥5cm), clinical tumor-node-metastasis (TNM) stage and portal vein tumor thrombus (PVTT) in HCC (all P <0.05). A survival analysis indicated that HCC patients with higher KIF18A expression had a significantly shorter DFS and OS after resection. A multivariate analysis suggested that KIF18A upregualtion was an independent factor for DFS [hazard risk (HR)=1.602; 95% confidence interval (CI), 1.029-2.579; P=0.031] and OS (HR=1.682; 95% CI, 1.089-2.600; P=0.019). KIF18A might be a biomarker for HCC diagnosis and an independent predictor of DFS and OS after surgical resection.
    Oncotarget 11/2014; 5(21):10271-10279. · 6.63 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Spindle length varies dramatically across species and during early development to segregate chromosomes optimally. Both intrinsic factors, such as regulatory molecules, and extrinsic factors, such as cytoplasmic volume, determine spindle length scaling. However, the properties that govern spindle shape and whether these features can be modulated remain unknown. Here, we analyzed quantitatively how the molecular players which regulate microtubule dynamics control the kinetics of spindle formation and shape. We find that, in absence of Clasp1 and Clasp2, spindle assembly is biphasic due to unopposed inward pulling forces from the kinetochore-fibers and that kinetochore-fibers also alter spindle geometry. We demonstrate that spindle shape scaling is independent of the nature of the molecules that regulate dynamic microtubule properties, but is dependent on the steady-state metaphase spindle length. The shape of the spindle scales anisotropically with increasing length. Our results suggest that intrinsic mechanisms control the shape of the spindle to ensure the efficient capture and alignment of chromosomes independently of spindle length. © 2014. Published by The Company of Biologists Ltd.
    11/2014; 3(12). DOI:10.1242/bio.201410363
  • Experimental Cell Research 02/2015; DOI:10.1016/j.yexcr.2015.02.010 · 3.37 Impact Factor