Defining the morphologic features and products of cell disassembly during apoptosis
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To the Editor,
The disassembly of apoptotic cells into smaller fragments has been a focus of recent research, and proposed to play a key role in processes such as cell clearance, immune responses and intercellular communication . However, the lack of consistency in the field in describing morphologic features/products of apoptotic cell disassembly has hindered the progress in determining the role of this process in homeostasis and disease settings.
Apoptotic cell disassembly was first described by Kerr et al.  as condensation of both nuclear and cytoplasmic content, followed by the fragmentation of the apoptotic cell into smaller membrane-bound vesicles. More recently, apoptotic cell disassembly was found to be a highly regulated process involving a number of distinct morphologic steps. Briefly, apoptotic morphology begins with cell rounding, followed by the formation of circular bulges at the plasma membrane. At later stages of apoptosis, the generation of thin membrane...
KeywordsCell Rounding Apoptotic Body Extracellular Vesicle Disassembly Process Apoptotic Morphology