The nod kinesin-like protein is localized along the arms of meiotic chromosomes and is required to maintain the position of achiasmate chromosomes on the developing meiotic spindle. Here we show that the localization of ectopically expressed nod protein on mitotic chromosomes precisely parallels that observed for wild-type nod protein on meiotic chromosomes. Moreover, the carboxyl-terminal half of the nod protein also binds to chromosomes when overexpressed in mitotic cells, whereas the overexpressed amino-terminal motor domain binds only to microtubules. Chromosome localization of the carboxyl-terminal domain of nod depends upon an 82-amino acid region comprised of three copies of a sequence homologous to the DNA-binding domain of HMG 14/17 proteins. These data map the two primary functional domains of the nod protein in vivo and provide a molecular explanation for the directing of the nod protein to a specific subcellular component, the chromosome.

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