The early cell cycles of Drosophila embryogenesis involve rapid oscillations between S phase and mitosis. These unique S-M cycles are driven by maternal stockpiles of components necessary for DNA replication and mitosis. Three genes, pan gu (png), plutonium (plu), and giant nuclei (gnu) are required to control the cell cycle specifically at the onset of Drosophila development by inhibiting DNA replication and promoting mitosis. PNG is a protein kinase that is in a complex with PLU. We employed a sensitized png mutant phenotype to screen for genes that when reduced in dosage would dominantly suppress or enhance png. We screened deficiencies covering over 50% of the autosomes and identified both enhancers and suppressors. Mutations in eIF-5A and PP1 87B dominantly suppress png. Cyclin B was shown to be a key PNG target. Mutations in cyclin B dominantly enhance png, whereas png is suppressed by cyclin B overexpression. Suppression occurs via restoration of Cyclin B protein levels that are decreased in png mutants. The plu and gnu phenotypes are also suppressed by cyclin B overexpression. These studies demonstrate that a crucial function of PNG in controlling the cell cycle is to permit the accumulation of adequate levels of Cyclin B protein.