, Volume 16, Issue 4, pp 321-333
Date: 15 Mar 2011

Conversation between apoptosis and autophagy: “Is it your turn or mine?”

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Abstract

Drug resistance of cancer cells is often correlated with apoptosis evasion; however, an active involvement of autophagy in this scenario has been recently proposed, based on the evidence that autophagy could exert a protective role toward the activation of apoptosis in cancer cells. In this review, we briefly review the basic features of apoptosis, and we describe in details the molecular patterns of autophagy, with a special emphasis on its still controversial physiological function(s). The crucial factors governing the cross talk between autophagy and apoptosis will be illustrated.