Mitotic spindle morphogenesis is a series of highly coordinated movements that lead to chromosome segregation and cytokinesis. We report that the intermediate filament protein lamin B, a component of the interphase nuclear lamina, functions in spindle assembly. Lamin B assembled into a matrix-like network in mitosis through a process that depended on the presence of the guanosine triphosphate-bound form of the small guanosine triphosphatase Ran. Depletion of lamin B resulted in defects in spindle assembly. Dominant negative mutant lamin B proteins that disrupt lamin B assembly in interphase nuclei also disrupted spindle assembly in mitosis. Furthermore, lamin B was essential for the formation of the mitotic matrix that tethers a number of spindle assembly factors. We propose that lamin B is a structural component of the long-sought-after spindle matrix that promotes microtubule assembly and organization in mitosis.
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