Centromere-associated protein E: a motor that puts the brakes on the mitotic checkpoint

Clin Cancer Res. 2008 Dec 1;14(23):7588-92. doi: 10.1158/1078-0432.CCR-07-4443.


Cell cycle checkpoints have long been recognized as important nodes for regulating cell proliferation and maintaining genomic integrity. These checkpoints are often altered in cancer and represent promising points for therapeutic intervention. Until recently, direct targeting of the mitotic checkpoint has been an untapped area for cancer drug discovery. Regulation of the mitotic checkpoint is complex, but many of the critical players have been identified and functionally characterized. A substantial number of these proteins can be localized to the kinetochore, a structure located at the centromeric region of each mitotic chromosome. The kinetochore mediates chromosome attachment to spindle microtubules and subsequent chromosome movement. The mitotic checkpoint monitors microtubule attachment and chromosome position on the mitotic spindle, inhibiting progression into anaphase until proper attachment and metaphase positioning is achieved. Centromere-associated protein E is a kinesin microtubule motor protein that plays an essential role in integrating the mechanics of microtubule-chromosome interactions with mitotic checkpoint signaling, and has emerged as a novel target for cancer therapy.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antineoplastic Agents / pharmacology*
  • Cell Cycle / drug effects
  • Cell Cycle / physiology
  • Chromosomal Proteins, Non-Histone / drug effects*
  • Chromosomal Proteins, Non-Histone / metabolism*
  • Genes, cdc / drug effects
  • Genes, cdc / physiology
  • Humans
  • Mitosis / drug effects
  • Mitosis / physiology
  • Neoplasms / drug therapy*


  • Antineoplastic Agents
  • Chromosomal Proteins, Non-Histone
  • centromere protein E