Sister chromatids are associated from their formation until their disjunction. Cohesion between sister chromatids is provided by protein complexes, of which some components are conserved across the kingdoms and between the mitotic and meiotic cell cycles. Sister chromatid cohesion is intimately linked to other aspects of chromosome behaviour and metabolism, in particular chromosome condensation, recombination and segregation. Recombination, sister chromatid cohesion and the relation between the two processes must be regulated differently in mitosis and meiosis. In meiosis, cohesion and recombination are modified in such a way that reciprocal exchange and reductional segregation of homologous chromosomes are ensured.