PerspectiveMolecular Biology

New Year's Resolution--Resolving Resolvases

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Science  09 Jan 2004:
Vol. 303, Issue 5655, pp. 184-185
DOI: 10.1126/science.1093959

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During genetic recombination in meiosis and the repair of DNA strand breaks, DNA molecules become linked at crossover points known as Holliday junctions. A key step in recombination is the resolution of these structures, which requires a specific DNA endonuclease called a resolvase. The Holliday junction resolvase has been identified in bacteria but not in eukaryotic cells. In their Perspective, Symington and Holloman discuss exciting new work that identifies a component of the resolvase in mammalian cells, which turns out to be a well-known DNA repair protein called RAD51C.