While many of the proteins involved in the mitotic centromere and kinetochore are conserved in meiosis, they often gain a novel function due to the unique needs of homolog segregation during meiosis I (MI). CENP-C is a critical component of the centromere for kinetochore assembly in mitosis. Recent work, however, has highlighted the unique features of meiotic CENP-C. Centromere establishment and stability require CENP-C loading at the centromere for CENP-A function. Pre-meiotic loading of proteins necessary for homolog recombination as well as cohesion also rely on CENP-C, as do the main scaffolding components of the kinetochore. Much of this work relies on new technologies that enable in vivo analysis of meiosis like never before. Here, we strive to highlight the unique role of this highly conserved centromere protein that loads on to centromeres prior to M-phase onset, but continues to perform critical functions through chromosome segregation. CENP-C is not merely a structural link between the centromere and the kinetochore, but also a functional one joining the processes of early prophase homolog synapsis to late metaphase kinetochore assembly and signaling.

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