The protein associated with Werner syndrome, WRN, is involved in DNA repair, checkpoint activation, and telomere maintenance. To better understand the involvement of WRN in double-strand DNA break (DSB) repair, we analyzed the combinatorial role of WRN-1, the C. elegans WRN helicase, in conjunction with EXO-1 and DNA-2 nucleases. We found that WRN-1 cooperates with DNA-2 to resect DSB ends in a pathway acting in parallel to EXO-1. The wrn-1
mutants show an aberrant accumulation of RPA and RAD-51, and the same pattern of accumulation is also observed in checkpoint-defective strains. We conclude that WRN-1 plays a conserved role in the resection of DSB ends and mediates checkpoint signaling, thereby influencing levels of RPA and RAD-51. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.