Geminin-Cdt1 balance is critical for genetic stability

Mutat Res. 2005 Jan 6;569(1-2):111-21. doi: 10.1016/j.mrfmmm.2004.05.026.


A cell limits its DNA replication activity to once per cell division cycle to maintain its genomic integrity. Studies in a variety of organisms are elucidating how these controls are exercised. Key amongst these is the regulation of replication initiator proteins such as Cdt1. Cdt1 is present in cells in G1 phase where it is required for initiation of replication. Once origins have fired, Cdt1 is either exported out of the nucleus or degraded, thereby preventing another round of replication. Higher eukaryotes have evolved another redundant mechanism, an inhibitor called geminin, to restrain Cdt1 activity. Studies in multiple organisms have shown that unregulated Cdt1 activity stimulates overreplication of the genome. Interestingly, the same seems to be true when geminin is depleted. The imbalance in the activities of these proteins causes the activation of key checkpoint proteins, the ATM/ATR kinases and the tumor suppressor, p53. This review proposes that a balance between Cdt1 and geminin is important for maintaining genomic stability.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cell Cycle / genetics*
  • Cell Cycle Proteins / biosynthesis*
  • DNA Replication / genetics*
  • Geminin
  • Genomic Instability / genetics*
  • Humans


  • CDT1 protein, human
  • Cell Cycle Proteins
  • GMNN protein, human
  • Geminin