Destruction of mitotic cyclins by ubiquitin-dependent proteolysis is required for cells to complete mitosis and enter interphase of the next cell cycle. In clam eggs, this process is catalyzed by a cyclin-selective ubiquitin carrier protein, E2-C, and the cyclosome/anaphase promoting complex (APC), a 20S particle containing cyclin-selective ubiquitin ligase activity. Here we report cloning a human homolog of E2-C, UbcH10, which shares 61% amino acid identity with clam E2-C and can substitute for clam E2-C in vitro. Dominant-negative clam E2-C and human UbcH10 proteins, created by altering the catalytic cysteine to serine, inhibit the in vitro ubiquitination and destruction of cyclin B in clam oocyte extracts. When transfected into mammalian cells, mutant UbcH10 inhibits the destruction of both cyclin A and B, arrests cells in M phase, and inhibits the onset of anaphase, presumably by blocking the ubiquitin-dependent proteolysis of proteins responsible for sister chromatid separation. Thus, E2-C/UbcH10-mediated ubiquitination is involved in both cdc2 inactivation and sister chromatid separation, processes that are normally coordinated during exit from mitosis.