NIMA promotes entry into mitosis in late G2 by some mechanism that is after activation of the Aspergillus nidulans G2 cyclin-dependent kinase, NIMXCDC2/NIMECyclin B. Here we present two independent lines of evidence which indicate that this mechanism involves control of NIMXCDC2/NIMECyclin B localization. First, we found that NIMECyclin B localized to the nucleus and the nucleus-associated organelle, the spindle pole body, in a NIMA-dependent manner. Analysis of cells from asynchronous cultures, synchronous cultures, and cultures arrested in S or G2 showed that NIMECyclin B was predominantly nuclear during interphase, with maximal nuclear accumulation in late G2. NIMXCDC2 colocalized with NIMECyclin B in G2 cells. Although inactivation of NIMA using either the nimA1 or nimA5 temperature-sensitive mutations blocked cells in G2, NIMXCDC2/NIMECyclin B localization was predominantly cytoplasmic rather than nuclear. Second, we found that nimA interacts genetically with sonA, which is a homologue of the yeast nucleocytoplasmic transporter GLE2/RAE1. Mutations in sonA were identified as allele-specific suppressors of nimA1. The sonA1 suppressor alleviated the nuclear division and NIMECyclin B localization defects of nimA1 cells without markedly increasing NIMXCDC2 or NIMA kinase activity. These results indicate that NIMA promotes the nuclear localization of the NIMXCDC2/ NIMECyclin B complex, by a process involving SONA. This mechanism may be involved in coordinating the functions of NIMXCDC2 and NIMA in the regulation of mitosis.

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Published in The Journal of Cell Biology, v. 141, no. 7, p. 1575-1587.

© 1998 Rockefeller University Press

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