During sexual reproduction, the zygote must inherit exactly one centrosome (spindle pole body [SPB] in yeasts) from the gametes, which then duplicates and assembles a bipolar spindle that supports the subsequent cell division. Here, we show that in the fission yeast Schizosaccharomyces pombe, the fusion of SPBs from the gametes is blocked in polyploid zygotes. As a result, the polyploid zygotes cannot proliferate mitotically and frequently form supernumerary SPBs during subsequent meiosis, which leads to multipolar nuclear divisions and the generation of extra spores. The blockage of SPB fusion is caused by persistent SPB localization of Pcp1, which, in normal diploid zygotic meiosis, exhibits a dynamic association with the SPB. Artificially induced constitutive localization of Pcp1 on the SPB is sufficient to cause blockage of SPB fusion and formation of extra spores in diploids. Thus, Pcp1-dependent SPB quantity control is crucial for sexual reproduction and ploidy homeostasis in fission yeast.

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