Biology

Centromeric signaling proteins boost G1 cyclin degradation and modulate cell size in budding yeast

by Joan M. Martínez-Láinez, David F. Moreno, Eva Parisi, Josep Clotet, Martí Aldea

Cell size scales with ploidy in a great range of eukaryotes, but the underlying mechanisms remain unknown. Using various orthogonal single-cell approaches, we show that cell size increases linearly with centromere (CEN) copy number in budding yeast. This effect is due to a G1 delay mediated by increased degradation of Cln3, the most upstream G1 cyclin acting at Start, and specific centromeric signaling proteins, namely Mad3 and Bub3. Mad3 binds both Cln3 and Cdc4, the adaptor component of the Skp1/Cul1/F-box (SCF) complex that targets Cln3 for degradation, these interactions being essential for the CEN-dosage dependent effects on cell size. Our results reveal a pathway that modulates cell size as a function of CEN number, and we speculate that, in cooperation with other CEN-independent mechanisms, it could assist the cell to attain efficient mass/ploidy ratios.

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