Meiotic DNA double-strand breaks produce reciprocally exchanged DNA strands, which mature into chiasmata that hold homologous chromosomes together as bivalents. These bivalents are subsequently separated in the first meiotic division. In a mutant lacking the newly identified Tetrahymena gene APRO1 (Anaphase promoting 1), meiosis is arrested by the end of prophase. Mature chiasmata are not formed but bivalents are connected via a molecular precursor structure. In-depth analysis of this arrested intermediate structure may help to elucidate the noncanonical molecular recombination pathway in Tetrahymena.