Progression through mitosis requires the precisely timed ubiquitin-dependent degradation of specific substrates. E2-C is a ubiquitin-conjugating enzyme that plays a critical role with anaphase-promoting complex/cyclosome (APC/C) in progression of and exit from M phase. Here we report that mammalian E2-C is expressed in late G2/M phase and is degraded as cells exit from M phase. The mammalian E2-C shows an autoubiquitinating activity leading to covalent conjugation to itself with several ubiquitins. The ubiquitination of E2-C is strongly enhanced by APC/C, resulting in the formation of a polyubiquitin chain. The polyubiquitination of mammalian E2-C occurs only when cells exit from M phase. Furthermore, mammalian E2-C contains two putative destruction boxes that are believed to act as recognition motifs for APC/C. The mutation of this motif reduced the polyubiquitination of mammalian E2-C, resulting in its stabilization. These results suggest that mammalian E2-C is itself a substrate of the APC/C-dependent proteolysis machinery, and that the periodic expression of mammalian E2-C may be a novel autoregulatory system for the control of the APC/C activity and its substrate specificity.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Molecular Biology
- Cell Biology