[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Members of the kinesin-8 motor class have the remarkable ability to both walk towards microtubule plus-ends and depolymerise these ends on arrival, thereby regulating microtubule length. To analyse how kinesin-8 multitasks, we studied the structure and function of the kinesin-8 motor domain. We determined the first crystal structure of a kinesin-8 and used cryo-electron microscopy to calculate the structure of the microtubule-bound motor. Microtubule-bound kinesin-8 reveals a new conformation compared with the crystal structure, including a bent conformation of the α4 relay helix and ordering of functionally important loops. The kinesin-8 motor domain does not depolymerise stabilised microtubules with ATP but does form tubulin rings in the presence of a non-hydrolysable ATP analogue. This shows that, by collaborating, kinesin-8 motor domain molecules can release tubulin from microtubules, and that they have a similar mechanical effect on microtubule ends as kinesin-13, which enables depolymerisation. Our data reveal aspects of the molecular mechanism of kinesin-8 motors that contribute to their unique dual motile and depolymerising functions, which are adapted to control microtubule length.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Centromere-associated protein-E (CENP-E) is a kinetochore-associated mitotic kinesin that is thought to function as the key receptor responsible for mitotic checkpoint signal transduction after interaction with spindle microtubules. We have identified GSK923295, an allosteric inhibitor of CENP-E kinesin motor ATPase activity, and mapped the inhibitor binding site to a region similar to that bound by loop-5 inhibitors of the kinesin KSP/Eg5. Unlike these KSP inhibitors, which block release of ADP and destabilize motor-microtubule interaction, GSK923295 inhibited release of inorganic phosphate and stabilized CENP-E motor domain interaction with microtubules. Inhibition of CENP-E motor activity in cultured cells and tumor xenografts caused failure of metaphase chromosome alignment and induced mitotic arrest, indicating that tight binding of CENP-E to microtubules is insufficient to satisfy the mitotic checkpoint. Consistent with genetic studies in mice suggesting that decreased CENP-E function can have a tumor-suppressive effect, inhibition of CENP-E induced tumor cell apoptosis and tumor regression.
Full-text · Article · Feb 2010 · Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Kinesins from the bipolar (Kinesin-5) family are conserved in eukaryotic organisms and play critical roles during the earliest stages of mitosis to mediate spindle pole body separation and formation of a bipolar mitotic spindle. To date, genes encoding bipolar kinesins have been reported to be essential in all organisms studied. We report the characterization of CaKip1p, the sole member of this family in the human pathogenic yeast Candida albicans. C. albicans Kip1p appears to localize to the mitotic spindle and loss of CaKip1p function interferes with normal progression through mitosis. Inducible excision of CaKIP1 revealed phenotypes unique to C. albicans, including viable homozygous Cakip1 mutants and an aberrant spindle morphology in which multiple spindle poles accumulate in close proximity to each other. Expression of the C. albicans Kip1 motor domain in Escherichia coli produced a protein with microtubule-stimulated ATPase activity that was inhibited by an aminobenzothiazole (ABT) compound in an ATP-competitive fashion. This inhibition results in 'rigor-like', tight association with microtubules in vitro. Upon treatment of C. albicans cells with the ABT compound, cells were killed, and terminal phenotype analysis revealed an aberrant spindle morphology similar to that induced by loss of the CaKIP1 gene. The ABT compound discovered is the first example of a fungal spindle inhibitor targeted to a mitotic kinesin. Our results also show that the non-essential nature and implementation of the bipolar motor in C. albicans differs from that seen in other organisms, and suggest that inhibitors of a non-essential mitotic kinesin may offer promise as cidal agents for antifungal drug discovery.
Full-text · Article · Aug 2007 · Molecular Microbiology
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Kinesin motor proteins utilize the energy from ATP hydrolysis to transport cellular cargo along microtubules. Kinesins that play essential roles in the mechanics of mitosis are attractive targets for novel antimitotic cancer therapies. Monastrol, a cell-permeable inhibitor that specifically inhibits the kinesin Eg5, the Xenopus laevis homologue of human KSP, can cause mitotic arrest and monopolar spindle formation. In this study, we show that the extent of monastrol inhibition of KSP microtubule-stimulated ATP hydrolysis is highly dependent upon ionic strength. Detailed kinetic analysis of KSP inhibition by monastrol in the presence and absence of microtubules suggests that monastrol binds to the KSP-ADP complex, forming a KSP-ADP-monastrol ternary complex, which cannot bind to microtubules productively and cannot undergo further ATP-driven conformational changes.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Several members of the kinesin family of microtubule motor proteins play essential roles in mitotic spindle function and are potential targets for the discovery of novel antimitotic cancer therapies. KSP, also known as HsEg5, is a kinesin that plays an essential role in formation of a bipolar mitotic spindle and is required for cell cycle progression through mitosis. We identified a potent inhibitor of KSP, CK0106023, which causes mitotic arrest and growth inhibition in several human tumor cell lines. Here we show that CK0106023 is an allosteric inhibitor of KSP motor domain ATPase with a Ki of 12 nM. Among five kinesins tested, CK0106023 was specific for KSP. In tumor-bearing mice, CK0106023 exhibited antitumor activity comparable to or exceeding that of paclitaxel and caused the formation of monopolar mitotic figures identical to those produced in cultured cells. KSP was most abundant in proliferating human tissues and was absent from cultured postmitotic neurons. These findings are the first to demonstrate the feasibility of targeting mitotic kinesins for the treatment of cancer.