Article

Chromosome Research

, Volume 21, Issue 2, pp 101-106

First online:

Open Access This content is freely available online to anyone, anywhere at any time.

Esperanto for histones: CENP-A, not CenH3, is the centromeric histone H3 variant

  • W. C. EarnshawAffiliated withWellcome Trust Centre for Cell Biology, University of Edinburgh Email author 
  • , R. C. AllshireAffiliated withWellcome Trust Centre for Cell Biology, University of Edinburgh
  • , B. E. BlackAffiliated withDepartment of Biochemistry and Biophysics, Perelman School of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania
  • , K. BloomAffiliated withDepartment of Biology, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
  • , B. R. BrinkleyAffiliated withDepartment of Molecular and Cellular Biology, Baylor College of Medicine
  • , W. BrownAffiliated withSchool of Biology, Medical School Queen’s Medical Centre, University of Nottingham
  • , I. M. CheesemanAffiliated withWhitehead Institute and Department of Biology, MIT
  • , K. H. A. ChooAffiliated withChromosome Research, Murdoch Childrens Research Institute, Department of Paediatrics, Royal Children’s Hospital
  • , G. P. CopenhaverAffiliated withDepartment of Biology and the Carolina Center for Genome Sciences, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
    • , J. G. DeLucaAffiliated withDepartment of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Colorado State University
    • , A. DesaiAffiliated withLudwig Institute for Cancer Research, University of California at San Diego
    • , S. DiekmannAffiliated withMolecular Biology, FLI
    • , S. ErhardtAffiliated withZMBH, DKFZ-ZMBH Alliance, University of Heidelberg
    • , M. Fitzgerald-HayesAffiliated withDepartment of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, University of Massachusetts
    • , D. FoltzAffiliated withDepartment of Biochemistry and Molecular Genetics, University of Virginia
    • , T. FukagawaAffiliated withDepartment of Molecular Genetics, National Institute of Genetics
    • , R. GassmannAffiliated withIBMC—Instituto de Biologia Molecular e Celular, Universidade do Porto
    • , D. W. GerlichAffiliated withInstitute of Molecular Biotechnology of the Austrian Academy of Sciences (IMBA)
    • , D. M. GloverAffiliated withDepartment of Genetics, University of Cambridge
    • , G. J. GorbskyAffiliated withCell Cycle and Cancer Biology, Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation
    • , S. C. HarrisonAffiliated withJack and Eileen Connors Structural Biology Laboratory, Department of Biological Chemistry and Molecular Pharmacology, Harvard Medical School and Howard Hughes Medical Institute
    • , P. HeunAffiliated withMax Planck Institute of Immunobiology and Epigenetics
    • , T. HirotaAffiliated withCancer Institute of the Japanese Foundation for Cancer Research (JFCR)
    • , L. E. T. JansenAffiliated withInstituto Gulbenkian de Ciência
    • , G. KarpenAffiliated withLawrence Berkeley National Lab, Life Sciences Division and UC Berkeley, Department of Molecular and Cell Biology
    • , G. J. P. L. KopsAffiliated withDepartments of Medical Oncology and Cancer Genomics Netherlands, University Medical Center Utrecht
    • , M. A. LampsonAffiliated withDepartment of Biology, University of Pennsylvania
    • , S. M. LensAffiliated withDepartment of Medical Oncology, University Medical Center Utrecht
    • , A. LosadaAffiliated withChromosome Dynamics Group, Molecular Oncology Programme, Spanish National Cancer Research Centre (CNIO)
    • , K. LugerAffiliated withDepartment of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Colorado State University
    • , H. MaiatoAffiliated withIBMC—Instituto de Biologia Molecular e Celular, Universidade do Porto
    • , P. S. MaddoxAffiliated withInstitute for Research in Immunology and Cancer (IRIC), Department of Pathology and Cell Biology, Université de Montréal
    • , R. L. MargolisAffiliated withTumor Development Program, Sanford-Burnham Medical Research Institute
    • , H. MasumotoAffiliated withDepartment of Human Genome Research, Kazusa DNA Research Institute
    • , A. D. McAinshAffiliated withCentre for Mechanochemical Cell Biology, Division of Biomedical Cell Biology, Warwick Medical School, University of Warwick
    • , B. G. MelloneAffiliated withDepartment of Molecular and Cell Biology, University of Connecticut
    • , P. MeraldiAffiliated withPhysiology and Metabolism Department, Medical Faculty, University of Geneva
    • , A. MusacchioAffiliated withDepartment of Mechanistic Cell Biology, Max Planck Institute of Molecular Physiology
    • , K. OegemaAffiliated withLudwig Institute for Cancer Research, University of California at San Diego
    • , R. J. O’NeillAffiliated withDepartment of Molecular and Cell Biology, University of Connecticut
    • , E. D. SalmonAffiliated withDepartment of Biology, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
    • , K. C. ScottAffiliated withInstitute for Genome Sciences and Policy, Department of Molecular Genetics and Microbiology, Duke University
    • , A. F. StraightAffiliated withDepartment of Biochemistry, Stanford University
    • , P. T. StukenbergAffiliated withDepartment of Biochemistry and Molecular Genetics, University of Virginia School of Medicine
    • , B. A. SullivanAffiliated withInstitute for Genome Sciences and Policy, Department of Molecular Genetics and Microbiology, Duke University
    • , K. F. SullivanAffiliated withCentre for Chromosome Biology, School of Natural Sciences, National University of Ireland, Galway
    • , C. E. SunkelAffiliated withIBMC—Instituto de Biologia Molecular e Celular and ICBAS—Instituto de Ciencias Biomédica Abel Salazar, Universidade do Porto
    • , J. R. SwedlowAffiliated withCentre for Gene Regulation and Expression, College of Life Sciences, University of Dundee
    • , C. E. WalczakAffiliated withMedical Sciences Program, Indiana University
    • , P. E. WarburtonAffiliated withDepartment of Genetics and Genomic Sciences, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai
    • , S. WestermannAffiliated withResearch Institute of Molecular Pathology (IMP)
    • , H. F. WillardAffiliated withInstitute for Genome Sciences and Policy, Duke University
    • , L. WordemanAffiliated withDepartment of Physiology and Biophysics, University of Washington School of Medicine
    • , M. YanagidaAffiliated withG0 Cell Unit, Okinawa Institute of Science and Technology Graduate University
    • , T. J. YenAffiliated withFox Chase Cancer Center
    • , K. YodaAffiliated withBioscience and Biotechnology Center, Nagoya University
    • , D. W. ClevelandAffiliated withLudwig Institute for Cancer Research, University of California at San Diego Email author 

Abstract

The first centromeric protein identified in any species was CENP-A, a divergent member of the histone H3 family that was recognised by autoantibodies from patients with scleroderma-spectrum disease. It has recently been suggested to rename this protein CenH3. Here, we argue that the original name should be maintained both because it is the basis of a long established nomenclature for centromere proteins and because it avoids confusion due to the presence of canonical histone H3 at centromeres.

Keywords

centromere CENP-A histone kinetochore CenH3