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Department of Energy Office of Science
GM/CA @ APS Sponsors:
National Institute of General Medical Sciences (NIGMS) and National Cancer Institute (NCI) of the National Institutes of Health (NIH)


Yawen Bai group (National Cancer Institute, NIH) and collaborators


Accurate segregation of chromosomes during cell division is essential for the reproduction and development of all organisms. Missegregation of chromosomes can cause cancer and other diseases. Using GM/CA@APS beamlines, the Yawen Bai group and collaborators defined the structure of the conserved region of the centromere protein CENP-C in complex with the centromeric nucleosome. This structure reveals a general mechanism of chromosome segregation and is a major advance in understanding human inheritance beyond DNA sequence.

Figure: Structure of the CENP-C motif (red) in complex with the centromeric nucleosome. The CENP-C motif docks on H2A (light orange) and H2B (salmon) and specifically interacts with the C-terminal tail of centromere-specific histone CENP-A (light blue). Histone H4 is light green (Image: Yawen Bai, National Cancer Institute, NIH).


Citation: Kato H, Jiang J, Zhou BR, Rozendaal M, Feng H, Ghirlando R, Xiao TS, Straight AF, Bai Y. A conserved mechanism for centromeric nucleosome recognition by centromere protein CENP-C. Science. 2013 May 31; 340:1110-1113. doi: 10.1126/science.1235532.

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