Mis-specification of cortical identity in a fission yeast PAK mutant

K E Sawin, M A Hajibagheri, P Nurse

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The regulation of cell polarity in the fission yeast Schizosaccharomyces pombe is apparent in the restriction of extensile growth to the two ends of a cylindrically shaped cell, and in a specific transition - termed 'new-end take-off' (NETO) - between monopolar and bipolar growth mid-way through the cell cycle [1]. Several genes have been identified that affect one or more aspects of cell polarity (reviewed in [2] [3]), and the molecular pathways regulating cell polarity in fission yeast appear to be conserved among eukaryotes [3] [4] [5] [6] [7] [8] [9], but it is less clear how the proteins involved organize polarity at the level of the entire cell. Here, we describe novel cytological markers of cell polarity in fission yeast and their unusual localization in the monopolar growth mutant orb2-34, which carries a non-lethal mutation in the essential gene shk1(+)/pak1(+)/orb2(+), which encodes a p21-activated kinase (PAK) family member [8] [9] [10] [11] [12]. Our results suggest that, in contrast to other monopolar-growing mutants, the monopolar phenotype of the orb2-34 mutant might not be due to a defect in activating end growth per se, but rather reflects a failure of one of the cell ends to maintain the molecular properties that identify an end. Thus, one role of the Shk1/Pak1 kinase in vivo might be to contribute to how a cell recognizes its ends as sites for growth.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1335-8
Number of pages4
JournalCurrent biology : CB
Issue number22
Publication statusPublished - 1999


Dive into the research topics of 'Mis-specification of cortical identity in a fission yeast PAK mutant'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this