Nucleases are required to process and repair DNA damage in living cells. One of the best studied nucleases is the RecB protein, which functions in Escherichia coli as a component of the RecBCD enzyme complex that amends double-strand breaks in DNA. Although archaea do not contain the RecBCD complex, a RecB-like nuclease from Pyrococcus abyssi has been cloned, expressed and purified. The protein was crystallized by the sitting-drop vapour-diffusion method using polyethylene glycol 8000 as the precipitant. The crystals belong to the orthorhombic space group C2221, with unit-cell parameters a = 81.5, b = 159.8, c = 100.8 Å. Self-rotation function and native Patterson map calculations revealed that there is a dimer in the asymmetric unit with its local twofold axis running parallel to the crystallographic twofold screw axis. The crystals diffracted to about 2 Å and a complete native data set was collected to 2.65 Å resolution.