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Mechanisms of apoptosis

Abstract

Nearly 15 types of programmed cell death (PCD) have been identified to date. Among them, apoptosis is the most common and well-studied type of PCD. In this review, we discuss different apoptotic pathways in which plasma membrane and membrane organelles, such as mitochondria, endoplasmic reticulum, Golgi apparatus, lysosomes, and nucleus play the pivotal role. Data concerning caspase cascades involved in these mechanisms are described. Various apoptosis induction mechanisms are analyzed and compared. The close relations between them and the possibility of switching from one pathway to another are demonstrated. In most cases, the result of these pathways is mitochondrial membrane permeabilization and/or caspase activation. These two events are closely linked and serve as the central point of integration of the apoptotic cell death pathways.

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Abbreviations

ER:

endoplasmic reticulum

GA:

Golgi apparatus

PCD:

programmed cell death

PTP:

permeability transition pore

ROS:

reactive oxygen species

UPR:

unfolded protein response

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Correspondence to M. A. Savitskaya.

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Original Russian Text © M. A. Savitskaya, G. E. Onishchenko, 2015, published in Biokhimiya, 2015, Vol. 80, No. 11, pp. 1613-1627.

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Savitskaya, M.A., Onishchenko, G.E. Mechanisms of apoptosis. Biochemistry Moscow 80, 1393–1405 (2015). https://doi.org/10.1134/S0006297915110012

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Keywords

  • apoptosis
  • necrosis
  • caspase pathways
  • membrane organelles