Meiotic recombination: An affair of two recombinases

Michael G. Sehorn, Patrick Sung

Research output: Contribution to journalShort surveypeer-review

20 Scopus citations


In E. coli, homologous recombination is catalyzed by the RecA recombinase. Two RecA-like factors, Rad51 and Dmc1, are found in eukaryotes. Whereas Rad51 is needed for homologous recombination reactions in both mitotic and meiotic cells, the role of Dmc1 is restricted to meiosis. Recent work has shown that, like RecA and Rad51, Dmc1 mediates the homologous DNA pairing strand exchange reaction via a filamentous intermediate assembled on single-stranded DNA. Emerging evidence suggests that the tumor suppressor BRCA2 functions in the assembly of nucleoprotein filaments of Rad51 and Dmc1. The manner in which Rad51 and Dmc1 functionally cooperate in meiotic recombination remains to be determined.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1375-1377
Number of pages3
JournalCell Cycle
Issue number11
StatePublished - Nov 2004
Externally publishedYes


  • Chromosome segregation
  • Homologous DNA pairing
  • Recombinases
  • Recombination mediators

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Biology
  • Developmental Biology
  • Cell Biology


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