Maturation-promoting factor (MPF) is a cell cycle control element able to cause cells to enter M-phase upon microinjection and will induce metaphase in nuclei incubated in cell extracts. Previous work has shown that MPF is composed of a complex between p34cdc 2 protein kinase and a B-type cyclin. In the present work gamma-S-ATP was found to cause activation of MPF activity in partially purified preparations, but this activation was lost upon chromatography on Matrex Green gel A. Readdition of other Matrex Green fractions to purified MPF restored the ability of gamma-S-ATP to activate MPF for nuclear breakdown as well as phosphorylation of histone H1. Use of the system described here will facilitate study of p34cdc 2 kinase activation and identification of elements involved in MPF regulation.

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