Cell division is regulated by cyclin-dependent kinases (Cdks) and requires the periodic activation and inactivation of transcription factors that generate waves of gene expression in different cell-cycle phases. In fission yeast, the MCB-binding transcription factor (MBF) is activated at the end of G1 and regulates the expression of a set of genes that encode for proteins involved in the G1/S transition and DNA replication. Here, we review the importance of controlling MBF by Cdk activity at the onset of S phase. Furthermore, we emphasize that MBF regulation by Cdk is particularly critical under conditions in which G1 is extended, such as in nitrogen-poor environments, where down-regulation of Cdk activity in G1 is crucial to generate a proper wave of MBF-dependent transcription at the end of G1, which is critical to promote a successful S phase.
Keywords: CDK inhibition; Cell cycle; G1/S transcription; Gad8; Genomic instability; MBF; Nitrogen; Rum1; Ste9; TORC2; dNTPs.