Prospore membrane formation: how budding yeast gets shaped in meiosis

Microbiol Res. 2003;158(2):83-90. doi: 10.1078/0944-5013-00194.


During meiosis in Saccharomyces cerevisiae four daughter cells, called spores, are generated within the boundaries of the mother cell. This cell differentiation process requires de novo synthesis of prospore membranes (PSMs), which are the precursors of the spore plasma membranes. Assembly of these membranes is initiated at the spindle pole bodies (SPBs) during meiosis II. At this stage of the cell cycle, 4 SPBs are present. Two different meiosis-specific structures are known to be required for PSM formation. At the SPBs, specialized attachments, called the meiotic plaques, provide the required functionality necessary for the recruitment and assembly of the membranes. During subsequent membrane elongation, a second structure becomes important. This proteinaceous assembly forms a coat, called the leading edge protein coat (LEP coat), which covers the boundaries of the membranes. Assembly of the coat occurs at sites next to the SPBs, whereas its disassembly is concomitant to the closure of the membranes. This mini review discusses our current understanding of how the meiotic plaque and the LEP coat might function during biogenesis of the prospore membrane.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Cell Membrane / metabolism
  • Cell Membrane / ultrastructure
  • Meiosis*
  • Models, Biological
  • Saccharomyces cerevisiae / cytology
  • Saccharomyces cerevisiae / growth & development
  • Saccharomyces cerevisiae / physiology*
  • Saccharomyces cerevisiae Proteins / metabolism*
  • Spores, Fungal / cytology
  • Spores, Fungal / physiology


  • Saccharomyces cerevisiae Proteins