The ATR (ATM- and rad3-related) kinase is an essential checkpoint factor in human cells. In response to replication stress (i.e., stresses that cause replication fork stalling) or ultraviolet radiation, ATR becomes active and phosphorylates numerous factors involved in the checkpoint response including the checkpoint kinase Chk1. ATR is invariably associated with ATRIP (ATR-interacting protein) in human cells. Depletion of ATRIP by siRNA causes a loss of ATR without affecting ATR mRNA levels indicating that complex formation stabilizes ATR. ATRIP is also a substrate for the ATR kinase, but this modification does not play a significant role in the recruitment of ATR-ATRIP to sites of damage, the activation of Chk1, or the modification of p53.