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Genome Dyn Stab. 2008 Apr 5;3:91.

Biochemistry of Meiotic Recombination: Formation, Processing, and Resolution of Recombination Intermediates.

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Section of Microbiology, University of California, Davis, One Shields Ave, Davis, CA 95616-8665, USA.


Meiotic recombination ensures accurate chromosome segregation during the first meiotic division and provides a mechanism to increase genetic heterogeneity among the meiotic products. Unlike homologous recombination in somatic (vegetative) cells, where sister chromatid interactions prevail and crossover formation is avoided, meiotic recombination is targeted to involve homologs, resulting in crossovers to connect the homologs before anaphase of the first meiotic division. The mechanisms responsible for homolog choice and crossover control are poorly understood, but likely involve meiosis-specific recombination proteins, as well as meiosis-specific chromosome organization and architecture. Much progress has been made to identify and biochemically characterize many of the proteins acting during meiotic recombination. This review will focus on the proteins that generate and process heteroduplex DNA, as well as those that process DNA junctions during meiotic recombination, with particular attention to how recombination activities promote crossover resolution between homologs.

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