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J Cell Sci April 1, 2006; 119 (Pt 7): 1213-8.

Cytostatic factor: an activity that puts the cell cycle on hold.

Schmidt A , Rauh NR , Nigg EA , Mayer TU .

Fertilization is the fundamental process in which two gametes - sperm and oocyte - fuse to generate a zygote that will form a new multicellular organism. In most vertebrates, oocytes await fertilization while arrested at metaphase of meiosis II. This resting state can be stable for many hours and depends on a cytoplasmic activity termed cytostatic factor (CSF). Recently, members of the novel Emi/Erp family of proteins have been put forward as important components of CSF. These proteins inhibit the anaphase-promoting complex/cyclosome (APC/C), which acts at the very core of the cell cycle regulatory machinery. Initially, Xenopus early mitotic inhibitor 1 (Emi1) was proposed to be a component of CSF, but newer work suggests that a structural relative, Emi-related protein 1 (Erp1/Emi2), is essential for maintenance of CSF arrest in Xenopus. Most importantly, studies on Erp1/Emi2 regulation have led to a detailed molecular understanding of the Ca2+-mediated release from CSF arrest that occurs upon fertilization.

PubMed ID: 16554437
Article link: J Cell Sci

Species referenced: Xenopus laevis
Genes referenced: fubp1