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Flp is a member of the integrase family of site-specific recombinases. Flp is known to be a double-stranded (ds)DNA binding protein that binds sequence specifically to the 13 bp binding elements in the FRT site (Flprecognitiontarget). We subjected a random pool of oligonucleotides to the in vitro binding site selection method and have unexpectedly recovered a series of single-stranded oligonucleotides to which Flp binds with high affinity. These single-stranded oligonucleotides differ in sequence from the duplex FRT site. The minimal length of the oligonucleotides which is active is 29 nt. This single strand-specific DNA binding activity is located in the same C-terminal 32 kDa domain of Flp in which the site-specific dsDNA binding activity resides. Competition studies suggest that the apparent affinity of Flp for single-stranded oligonucleotide is somewhat less than for a complete duplex FRT site but greater than for a single duplex 13 bp binding element. We have also shown that Cre, another member of the integrase family of site-specific recombinases, also exhibits single-stranded DNA binding similar to that of Flp.