William J Sullivan

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Drosophila cellularization and animal cell cytokinesis rely on the coordinated functions of the microfilament and microtubule cytoskeletal systems. To identify new proteins involved in cellularization and cytokinesis, we have conducted a biochemical screen for microfilament/microtubule-associated proteins (MMAPs). 17 MMAPs were identified; seven have been(More)
The positioning of centrosomes, or microtubule-organizing centres, within cells plays a critical part in animal development. Here we show that, in Drosophila embryos undergoing mitosis, the positioning of centrosomes within bipolar spindles and between daughter nuclei is determined by a balance of opposing forces generated by a bipolar kinesin motor,(More)
The early Drosophila embryo undergoes two distinct membrane invagination events believed to be mechanistically related to cytokinesis: metaphase furrow formation and cellularization. Both involve actin cytoskeleton rearrangements, and both have myosin II at or near the forming furrow. Actin and myosin are thought to provide the force driving membrane(More)
The nuclei of early syncytial Drosophila embryos migrate dramatically toward the poles. The cellular mechanisms driving this process, called axial expansion, are unclear, but myosin II activity is required. By following regulatory myosin light chain (RLC)-green fluorescent protein dynamics in living embryos, we observed cycles of myosin recruitment to the(More)
Cytokinesis requires a dramatic remodeling of the cortical cytoskeleton as well as membrane addition. The Drosophila pericentrosomal protein, Nuclear-fallout (Nuf), provides a link between these two processes. In nuf-derived embryos, actin remodeling and membrane recruitment during the initial stages of metaphase and cellular furrow formation are disrupted.(More)
daughterless-abo-like (dal) is a maternal-effect semilethal mutation in Drosophila. The nuclear divisions of embryos derived from homozygous dal females are normal through nuclear cycle 10. However, during nuclear cycles 11, 12 and 13, a total of about half of the nuclei in each embryo either fail to divide or fuse with a neighboring nucleus during(More)
BACKGROUND Cell cycle checkpoints maintain the fidelity of the somatic cell cycle by ensuring that one step in the cell cycle is not initiated until a previous step has been completed. The extent to which cell cycle checkpoints play a role in the initial rapid embryonic divisions of higher eukaryotes is unclear. The initial syncytial divisions of Drosophila(More)
Anillin is a conserved component of the contractile ring that is essential for cytokinesis, and physically interacts with three conserved cleavage furrow proteins, F-actin, myosin II and septins in biochemical assays. We demonstrate that the Drosophila scraps gene, identified as a gene involved in cellularization, encodes Anillin. We characterize defects in(More)
Cytoplasmic organization, nuclear migration, and nuclear division in the early syncytial Drosophila embryo are all modulated by the cytoskeleton. In an attempt to identify genes involved in cytoskeletal functions, we have examined a collection of maternal-effect lethal mutations induced by single P-element transposition for those that cause defects in(More)
nuclear fallout (nuf) is a maternal effect mutation that specifically disrupts the cortical syncytial divisions during Drosophila embryogenesis. We show that the nuf gene encodes a highly phosphorylated novel protein of 502 amino acids with C-terminal regions predicted to form coiled-coils. During prophase of the late syncytial divisions, Nuf concentrates(More)