This review focuses on the factors that define the differences between the two types of DNA ends encountered by eukaryotic cells: telomeres and double strand breaks (DSBs). Although these two types of DNA termini are functionally distinct, recent studies have shown that a number of proteins is shared at telomeres and sites of DSB repair. The significance of these common components is discussed, as well as the types of DNA repair events that can compensate for a defective telomere. Copyright (C) 2000 Elsevier Science B.V.
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