RTEL1: an essential helicase for telomere maintenance and the regulation of homologous recombination


Telomere maintenance and DNA repair are crucial processes that protect the genome against instability. RTEL1, an essential iron-sulfur cluster-containing helicase, is a dominant factor that controls telomere length in mice and is required for telomere integrity. In addition, RTEL1 promotes synthesis-dependent strand annealing to direct DNA double-strand breaks into non-crossover outcomes during mitotic repair and in meiosis. Here, we review the role of RTEL1 in telomere maintenance and homologous recombination and discuss models linking RTEL1's enzymatic activity to its function in telomere maintenance and DNA repair.

Journal details

Volume 39
Issue number 5
Pages 1647-1655
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Crick authors

Crick First author
Crick Corresponding author