Haspin has Multiple Functions in the Plant Cell Division Regulatory Network

Plant Cell Physiol. 2016 Apr;57(4):848-61. doi: 10.1093/pcp/pcw030. Epub 2016 Feb 12.


Progression of cell division is controlled by various mitotic kinases. In animal cells, phosphorylation of histone H3 at Thr3 by the kinase Haspin (haploid germ cell-specific nuclear protein kinase) promotes centromeric Aurora B localization to regulate chromosome segregation. However, less is known about the function of Haspin in regulatory networks in plant cells. Here, we show that inhibition of Haspin with 5-iodotubercidin (5-ITu) in Bright Yellow-2 (BY-2) cells delayed chromosome alignment. Haspin inhibition also prevented the centromeric localization of Aurora3 kinase (AUR3) and disrupted its function. This suggested that Haspin plays a role in the specific positioning of AUR3 on chromosomes in plant cells, a function conserved in animals. The results also indicated that Haspin and AUR3 are involved in the same pathway, which regulates chromosome alignment during prometaphase/metaphase. Remarkably, Haspin inhibition by 5-ITu also led to a severe cytokinesis defect, resulting in binuclear cells with a partially formed cell plate. The 5-ITu treatment did not affect microtubules, AUR1/2 or the NACK-PQR pathway; however, it did alter the distribution of actin filaments on the cell plate. Together, these results suggested that Haspin has several functions in regulating cell division in plant cells: in the localization of AUR3 on centromeres and in regulating late cell plate expansion during cytokinesis.

Keywords: Aurora3 kinase; BY-2; Chromosome alignment; Cytokinesis; Haspin.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aurora Kinases / metabolism
  • Cell Division
  • Centromere / metabolism
  • Chromosomes, Plant
  • Metabolic Networks and Pathways
  • Metaphase
  • Nicotiana / cytology*
  • Nicotiana / drug effects
  • Plant Cells / metabolism*
  • Plant Proteins / genetics
  • Plant Proteins / metabolism*
  • Plants, Genetically Modified
  • Protein Kinases / genetics
  • Protein Kinases / metabolism
  • Tubercidin / analogs & derivatives
  • Tubercidin / pharmacology


  • Plant Proteins
  • 5-iodotubercidin
  • Protein Kinases
  • Aurora Kinases
  • Tubercidin

Associated data

  • GENBANK/LC052296
  • GENBANK/LC052297
  • GENBANK/LC052298
  • GENBANK/LC052299