Encyclopedia of Astrobiology

Living Edition
| Editors: Muriel Gargaud, William M. Irvine, Ricardo Amils, Henderson James Cleaves, Daniele Pinti, José Cernicharo Quintanilla, Michel Viso


  • Enrique Viguera
Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-642-27833-4_1351-4



Recombination is the process by which a new nucleic acid molecule formed by the combination (through covalent joining) of different sequences is obtained. It may involve (1) physical exchange between two duplex DNA homologous molecules (homologous recombination) occurring at any point along their sequence, (2) the covalent joining of two molecules at specific sequences (site-specific recombination) or at unrelated sequences (nonhomologous end joining), and (3) the joining of two different parental sequences by short repeats during replication (copy-choice recombination). Recombination is a major source of genetic variation during meiosis (the process of reductional cellular division in which a diploid cell generates four haploid cells that results in the formation of gametes or spores) in eukaryotes, as well as in the reshuffling (process by which DNA or RNA chimeric forms are generated by a breakage-and-join or template-switching...


Homologous Recombination Recombination Enzyme Lateral Gene Transfer Diploid Cell Immunoglobulin Gene 
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References and Further Reading

  1. Michel B, Leach D (n.d.) Homologous recombination-enzymes and pathways. In: Curtiss R III, Kaper JB, Squires CL, Karp PD, Neidhardt FC, Slauch JM (eds) EcoSal-Escherichia coli and Salmonella: cellular and molecular biology. ASM Press, Washington, DC. http://www.ecosal.org
  2. Negroni M, Buc H (2001) Mechanisms of retroviral recombination. Annu Rev Genet 35:275–302CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Snustad DP, Simmons MJ (2010) Principles of genetics, 5th edn. Wiley, New JerseyGoogle Scholar
  4. West SC (2003) Molecular views of recombination proteins and their control. Nat Rev Mol Cell Biol 4:435–445CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Genetics Department Sciences FacultyUniversity of MalagaMalagaSpain