DNA Fragmentation in Targets of CTL: An Example of Programmed Cell Death in the Immune System

  • J. John Cohen
  • Richard C. Duke
  • Robert Chervenak
  • Karen S. Sellins
  • Lori K. Olson
Part of the Advances in Experimental Medicine and Biology book series (AEMB, volume 187)


Our studies of T cell-mediated cytotoxicity grew out of an interest in the mechanism of programmed cell death. The death of cells in the metazoan body can be categorized functionally, morphologically and biochemically. On the functional level, cell death is often acceptable or desirable for the system; it is part of the design. Examples of this programmed cell death include morphogenetic death, which occurs during early development and helps shape organs and limbs; death in systems with a normal cell turnover, for example epithelia or polymorphonuclear neutrophils; and the involution of hormone-dependent tissues. Opposed to this functionally acceptable cell death is accidental death, such as might follow physical, chemical or anoxic injury, and certain bacterial and viral infections.


Programme Cell Death Chromium Release Nuclear Disintegration Endogenous Endonuclease Nuclear Lesion 
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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1985

Authors and Affiliations

  • J. John Cohen
    • 1
  • Richard C. Duke
    • 1
  • Robert Chervenak
    • 1
  • Karen S. Sellins
    • 1
  • Lori K. Olson
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Microbiology and ImmunologyUniversity of Colorado Medical SchoolDenverUSA

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