Apoptosis in the pathogenesis and treatment of disease

  title={Apoptosis in the pathogenesis and treatment of disease},
  author={Craig B. Thompson},
  pages={1456 - 1462}
  • C. Thompson
  • Published 10 March 1995
  • Biology, Medicine
  • Science
In multicellular organisms, homeostasis is maintained through a balance between cell proliferation and cell death. Although much is known about the control of cell proliferation, less is known about the control of cell death. Physiologic cell death occurs primarily through an evolutionarily conserved form of cell suicide termed apoptosis. The decision of a cell to undergo apoptosis can be influenced by a wide variety of regulatory stimuli. Recent evidence suggests that alterations in cell… 
Apoptosis and the shape of death.
Proper control of programmed cell death is crucial, and breakdown in the regulation of this process can result in a number of pathologies: inactivation of the death program has been associated with the development of cancer and autoimmune diseases, whereas aberrant activation of the apoptotic machinery is thought to contribute to the extensive cell deaths observed in neurodegenerative diseases and stroke.
Mechanisms and genes of cellular suicide
Genetic studies in the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans and in the fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster have led to the isolation of genes that are specifically required for the induction of programmed cell death.
Apoptosis : a technical overview.
Physiological cell death in mammals occurs during embryonic development of organs and tissues and maintains homeostasis of cell numbers during cyclic remodeling of many adult tissues, and is critical for the regulation of the immune response.
Apoptosis: the phenomenon and its determination
The phenomenon of apoptosis, and a number of techniques for its identification and quantification, are reviewed and specific therapies designed to enhance or decrease the susceptibility of individual cell types to undergo apoptosis could form the basis for treatment of diseases.
Control of Apoptosis Through Gene Regulation
Research has begun to elucidate the molecular mechanism underlying the initiation and manifestation of the apoptotic process, and it is now widely accepted that apoptotic cells are killed via a highly ordered and controlled program.
The relevance of apoptosis for cellular homeostasis and tumorigenesis in the intestine.
The role of apoptosis in normal cellular homeostasis and tumorigenesis in the gastrointestinal epithelium is focused on and the importance of understanding the molecular biology of apoptotic pathways in cancer therapy and future directions are addressed.
Apoptosis and the liver.
During the modulation phase of apoptosis many different genes such as p53, c-myc or Bcl-2/Bax have been shown to able to shift the balance either to cell survival or cell death.
Apoptosis and Alzheimer’s Disease
The evolution of a tissue during aging requires a noninflammatory mechanism for the removal of cells that are no longer necessary, which leads to distinct morphological alterations of the cell, such as DNA condensation, cell shrinkage, and membrane blebbing.
Apoptosis-Biochemistry: A Mini Review
Understanding the molecular mechanism of apoptosis including death genes, death signals, surface receptors and signal pathways will provide new insights in developing strategies to regulate cell survival/death.


Prevention of apoptosis by a baculovirus gene during infection of insect cells.
Apoptosis, a morphologically and biochemically defined type of programmed cell death commonly seen in vertebrates, was found to be initiated during baculovirus replication in insect cells and a specific viral gene product, p35, was identified as being responsible for blocking the apoptotic response.
Apoptosis: the physiologic pathway of cell death.
  • J. Cohen
  • Medicine, Biology
    Hospital practice
  • 1993
Physiologic roles of apoptosis may be subverted in pathologic processes, and drugs could be designed to limit apoptosis in AIDS or myocardial infarction or to promote apoptosis of tumor cells.
Bcl-2 and the regulation of programmed cell death
The bcl-2 gene has emerged as a critical regulator of PCD in a variety of physiological and pathological contexts and can contribute to the pathogenesis of many diseases ranging from cancer to AIDS.
Autoimmune disease. A problem of defective apoptosis.
Potent inducers of apoptosis including steroids, azathioprine, cyclophosphamide, and methotrexate are the most efficacious therapies for autoimmune disease currently known.
Control of programmed cell death in normal and leukemic cells: new implications for therapy.
The suppression of programmed cell death in cancer cells by viability factors suggests that decreasing the level of these factors may increase the effectiveness of cytotoxic cancer therapy.
Prevention of programmed cell death in Caenorhabditis elegans by human bcl-2.
Expression of the human bcl-2 gene in the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans reduced the number of programmed cell deaths, suggesting that the mechanism of programmedcell death controlled by bCl-2 in humans is the same as that in nematodes.
Cell death: the significance of apoptosis.
Programmed cell death and the control of cell survival: lessons from the nervous system.
This neurotrophic strategy for the regulation of neuronal numbers may be only one example of a general mechanism that helps to regulate the numbers of many other vertebrate cell types, which also require signals from other cells to survive.