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Centromeres become unstuck without heterochromatin.

Pascal Bernard and Robin Allshire (2002)

Trends Cell Biol, 12(9):419-24.

In most if not all eukaryotes, sister-chromatid cohesion, which is mediated by the chromosomal complex Cohesin, is destroyed by proteolysis at the transition from metaphase to anaphase. In metazoans, Cohesin is removed from chromosomes intwo steps, and the centromere and its associated pericentric heterochromatin constitute the last point of linkage between sister chromatids at metaphase. Mechanistic insight is now emerging on the way in which cells distinguish cohesion at the centromere from cohesion along chromosome arms. We discuss recent advances in our understanding of the role of centromeric heterochromatin in sister-chromatid cohesion and propose a causal relationship between this specialized type of chromatin and the removal by proteolysis of Cohesins that are associated with it.

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