The product of this gene is a member of the OTU (ovarian tumor) superfamily of predicted cysteine proteases. The encoded protein is a highly specific ubiquitin iso-peptidase, and cleaves ubiquitin from branched poly-ubiquitin chains but not from ubiquitinated substrates. It interacts with another ubiquitin protease and an E3 ubiquitin ligase that inhibits cytokine gene transcription in the immune system. It is proposed to function in specific ubiquitin-dependent pathways, possibly by providing an editing function for polyubiquitin chain growth. Alternative splicing results in multiple transcript variants.