Heterotrimeric G protein alpha subunits, RGS proteins, and GoLoco motif proteins have been recently implicated in the control of mitotic spindle dynamics in C. elegans and D. melanogaster. Here we show that "regulator of G protein signaling-14" (RGS14) is expressed by the mouse embryonic genome immediately prior to the first mitosis, where it colocalizes with the anastral mitotic apparatus of the mouse zygote. Loss of Rgs14 expression in the mouse zygote results in cytofragmentation and failure to progress to the 2-cell stage. RGS14 is found in all tissues and segregates to the nucleus in interphase and to the mitotic spindle and centrioles during mitosis. Alteration of RGS14 levels in exponentially proliferating cells leads to cell growth arrest. Our results indicate that RGS14 is one of the earliest essential product of the mammalian embryonic genome yet described and has a general role in mitosis.