The Cell-Cycle Control System
and NBK21497/ and NBK21719/
Copyright ? 2002, Bruce Alberts, Alexander Johnson, Julian Lewis, Martin Raff, Keith Roberts, and Peter Walter; Copyright ? 1983, 1989, 1994, Bruce Alberts, Dennis Bray, Julian Lewis, Martin Raff, Keith Roberts, and James D. Watson .NCBI Bookshelf. A service of the National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health.
Glossary : /books/NBK21052/
For many years cell biologists watched the puppet show of DNA synthesis, mitosis and cytokinesis but had no idea of what lay behind the curtain controlling these events. The cell-cycle control system was simply a black box inside the cell. It was not even clear whether there was a separate control system, or whether the processes of DNA synthesis, mitosis, and cytokinesis somehow controlled themselves. A major breakthrough came in the late 1980s with the identification of the key proteins of the control system, along with the realization that they are distinct from the proteins that perform the processes of DNA replication, chromosome segregation, and so on.
We first consider the basic principles upon which the cell-cycle control system operates. Then we discuss the protein components of the system and how they work together to activate the different phases of the cell cycle.
1. Overview of the Cell Cycle and Its Control
We begin our discussion by reviewing the stages of the eukaryotic cell cycle, presenting a summary of the current model of how the cycle is regulated, and briefly describing key experimental systems that have provided revealing information about cell-cycle regulation.
The Cell Cycle Is an Ordered Series of Events Leading to Replication of Cells
As illustrated in Figure 13-1, the cell cycle is divided into four major phases. In cycling (replicating) somatic cells, chromosomes are replicated during the S (synthesis) phase. After progressing through the G2 phase, cells begin the complicated process of mitosis, also called