The kinetic patterns of DNA synthesis in wild-type (RAD+) and rad 52 mutants of yeast, which exhibit high levels of synchrony during meiosis, are comparable. However, RAD 52 mutants accumulate single-strand breaks in parental DNA during the DNA synthesis period. Thus, the product of the RAD 52 gene has a role in meiotic DNA metabolism, as well as in the repair of DNA damage during mitotic growth. The observed breaks may be unresolved recombination intermediates.