Maternally contributed cyclin A and B proteins are initially distributed uniformly throughout the syncytial Drosophila embryo. As dividing nuclei migrate to the cortex of the embryo, the A and B cyclins become concentrated in surface layers extending to depths of approximately 30-40 microns and 5-10 microns, respectively. The initiation of nuclear envelope breakdown, spindle formation, and the initial congression of the centromeric regions of the chromosomes onto the metaphase plate all take place within the surface layer occupied by cyclin B on the apical side of the blastoderm nuclei. Cyclin B is seen mainly, but not exclusively, in the vicinity of microtubules throughout the mitotic cycle. It is most conspicuous around the centrosomes. Cyclin A is present at its highest concentrations throughout the cytoplasm during the interphase periods of the blastoderm cycles, although weak punctate staining can also be detected in the nucleus. It associates with the condensing chromosomes during prophase, segregates into daughter nuclei in association with chromosomes during anaphase, to redistribute into the cytoplasm after telophase. In contrast to the cycles following cellularization, neither cyclin is completely degraded upon the metaphase-anaphase transition.

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