How plants make ends meet: DNA double-strand break repair

Trends Plant Sci. 1999 Jul;4(7):263-269. doi: 10.1016/s1360-1385(99)01430-2.


DNA double-strand breaks (DSBs) lead to serious genomic deficiencies if left unrepaired. Recent studies have provided new insight into the mechanisms, the mutants and the genes involved in DSB repair in plants. These studies indicate that high fidelity DSB repair via homologous recombination is less frequent than non-homologous end-joining. Interestingly, non-homologous end-joining in plants is more error-prone than in other species, being associated with various rearrangements that often include deletions and insertions (filler DNA). We discuss the mechanism of error-prone DSB repair, which is probably an important driving force in plant genome evolution.