Telomerase counteracts telomere shortening, preventing cellular senescence. Telomerase deficiency causes telomere syndromes because of premature telomere exhaustion in highly proliferative cells. Paradoxically, in a recent issue of Cell, Margalef et al. (2018) demonstrate that telomerase causes telomere loss in cells lacking the RTEL1 helicase, which is defective in Hoyeraal-Hreidarsson syndrome (HHS).
Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.