Mark Levasseur

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Fully grown mammalian oocytes maintain a prophase I germinal-vesicle stage arrest in the ovary for extended periods before a luteinizing hormone surge induces entry into the first meiotic division. Cdh1 is an activator of the anaphase-promoting complex (APC) and APCcdh1 is normally restricted to late M to early G1 phases of the cell cycle. Here, we find(More)
The first female meiotic division (meiosis I, MI) is uniquely prone to chromosome segregation errors through non-disjunction, resulting in trisomies and early pregnancy loss. Here, we show a fundamental difference in the control of mammalian meiosis that may underlie such susceptibility. It involves a reversal in the well-established timing of activation of(More)
In mitosis, the spindle checkpoint protein Mad2 averts aneuploidy by delaying anaphase onset until chromosomes align. Here we show that depletion of Mad2 in meiosis I mouse oocytes induced an increased incidence of aneuploidy. Proteolysis of cyclin B and securin commenced earlier in Mad2-depleted oocytes, resulting in a shortened duration of meiosis I.(More)
During interkinesis, a metaphase II (MetII) spindle is built immediately after the completion of meiosis I. Oocytes then remain MetII arrested until fertilization. In mouse, we find that early mitotic inhibitor 2 (Emi2), which is an anaphase-promoting complex inhibitor, is involved in both the establishment and the maintenance of MetII arrest. In MetII(More)
We have investigated the relationship between the sperm-triggered Ca2+ oscillations and the activities of two cell cycle kinases (MPF activity and MAP kinase activity) at fertilisation of Ascidiella aspersa oocytes. Maturation Promoting Factor (MPF) activity is elevated in the metaphase I (MI)-arrested unfertilised oocyte (as measured by phosphorylation of(More)
Mouse eggs arrest at metaphase II following ovulation and are only triggered to complete meiosis when fertilized. Sperm break the cell-cycle arrest by a long-lasting series of Ca2+ spikes that lead to an activation of the anaphase-promoting complex/cyclosome. The signal transduction pathway is not fully resolved but both protein kinase C (PKC) and(More)
Mad2 is a pivotal component of the spindle assembly checkpoint (SAC) which inhibits anaphase promoting complex/cyclo-some (APC/C) activity by sequestering Cdc20 thereby regulating the destruction of securin and cyclin B. During mitosis, spindle depolymerisation induces a robust Mad2-dependent arrest due to inhibition of securin and cyclin B destruction. In(More)
The generation of calcium oscillations at fertilisation and during mitosis appears to be controlled by the cell cycle machinery. For example, the calcium oscillations in oocytes and embryos occur during metaphase and terminate upon entry into interphase. Here we report the manipulation of sperm-triggered calcium oscillations by cyclin-dependent kinase (CDK)(More)
Cyclin B1, the regulatory component of M phase-promoting factor (MPF), is degraded during the metaphase-anaphase transition in an anaphase-promoting complex/cyclosome (APC/C)-dependent process. MPF activity is stable in eggs, and a sperm-triggered Ca(2+) signal is needed to promote cyclin degradation. In frogs, a single Ca(2+) spike promotes cell cycle(More)
Sperm-triggered Ca(2+) oscillations occur throughout the animal kingdom. The mechanism sperm use to trigger Ca(2+) oscillations at fertilization has not been resolved in any egg. The temporal, spatial and regulatory characteristics of the Ca(2+) oscillations during fertilization in ascidians offer a unique advantage over other systems for determining the(More)