Int. J. Dev. Biol. 60: 255 - 261 (2016)
doi: 10.1387/ijdb.160189jk
© UPV/EHU Press

Aurora-A: an expedition to the pole of the spindle in Xenopus egg extracts

Jacek Z. Kubiak1,2,3 and Claude Prigent*,1,2

1CNRS, Unité Mixte de Recherche UMR6290, 2Université de Rennes 1, Institut de Génétique et Développement de Rennes, UEB, 35000 Rennes, France and 3Department of Hygiene and Physiology, Military Institute of Hygiene and Epidemiology, Warsaw, Poland

ABSTRACT The aim of this short review is to describe the contribution of Xenopus laevis egg extracts to the discovery and understanding of the regulation and function of the serine/threonine kinase Aurora-A. The power of these extracts to recapitulate cell cycle events makes them a precious tool to decipher complex biological processes at the molecular level, including the mechanisms that affect Aurora-A (post-translational modifications) and mechanisms in which Aurora-A plays a crucial role (bipolar spindle assembly). We focus on the results obtained in cell-free extracts, but we also give an updated overview of Aurora A functions found in other systems.

Keywords:

Aurora-A, Eg2, Ipl1, cell-free extract, Xenopus laevis, TPX2, spindle assembly

*Corresponding author e-mail: claude.prigent@univ-rennes1.fr