NEIL2 encodes a member of the Fpg/Nei family of DNA glycosylases. These glycosylases initiate the first step in base excision repair by cleaving oxidatively damaged bases and introducing a DNA strand break via their abasic site lyase activity. This enzyme is primarily associated with DNA repair during transcription and acts prefentially on cytosine-derived lesions, particularly 5-hydroxyuracil and 5-hydroxycytosine. It contains an N-terminal catalytic domain, a hinge region, and a C-terminal DNA-binding domain with helix-two-turn-helix and zinc finger motifs. This enzyme interacts with the X-ray cross complementing factor 1 scaffold protein as part of a multi-protein DNA repair complex. A pseudogene of this gene has been identified.