Inactivation of key substrates by ubiquitin-mediated proteolysis controls the passage of cells through mitosis. The APC/C (anaphase-promoting complex/cyclosome) targets a large number of substrates for proteolysis during the final steps of mitosis and cytokinesis, but the significance of these targeting events, particularly in mammalian cells, is largely unknown. In this review, I summarize what is known about how the APC/C selects its targets during mitotic exit and review the evidence that substrate targeting after anaphase onset may be required for the correct execution of events at this time in the cell cycle.

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