Identification of a Human Mitotic Checkpoint Gene: hsMAD2

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Science  11 Oct 1996:
Vol. 274, Issue 5285, pp. 246-248
DOI: 10.1126/science.274.5285.246


In Saccharomyces cerevisiae, MAD2 is required for mitotic arrest if the spindle assembly is perturbed. The human homolog of MAD2 was isolated and shown to be a necessary component of the mitotic checkpoint in HeLa cells by antibody electroporation experiments. Human, or Homo sapiens, MAD2 (hsMAD2) was localized at the kinetochore after chromosome condensation but was no longer observed at the kinetochore in metaphase, suggesting that MAD2 might monitor the completeness of the spindle-kinetochore attachment. Finally, T47D, a human breast tumor cell line that is sensitive to taxol and nocodazole, had reduced MAD2 expression and failed to arrest in mitosis after nocodazole treatment. Thus, defects in the mitotic checkpoint may contribute to the sensitivity of certain tumors to mitotic spindle inhibitors.

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