We investigated how Saccharomyces cerevisiae coordinate polarization, budding, and anaphase during a unique developmental program called return to growth (RTG) in which cells in meiosis return to mitosis upon nutrient shift. Cells reentering mitosis from prophase I deviate from the normal cell cycle by budding in G2 instead of G1. We found that cells do not maintain the bipolar budding pattern, a characteristic of diploid cells. Furthermore, strict temporal regulation of M-phase cyclin-dependent kinase (CDK; M-CDK) is important for polarity establishment and morphogenesis. Cells with premature M-CDK activity caused by loss of checkpoint kinase Swe1 failed to polarize and underwent anaphase without budding. Mutants with increased Swe1-dependent M-CDK inhibition showed additional or more penetrant phenotypes in RTG than mitosis, including elongated buds, multiple buds, spindle mispositioning, and septin perturbation. Surprisingly, the enhanced and additional phenotypes were not exclusive to RTG but also occurred with prolonged Swe1-dependent CDK inhibition in mitosis. Our analysis reveals that prolonged activation of the Swe1-dependent checkpoint can be detrimental instead of beneficial.
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