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We have generated rat monoclonal antibodies that specifically recognise caspase-2 from many species, including mouse, rat and humans. Using these antibodies, we have investigated caspase-2 expression, subcellular localisation and processing. We demonstrate that caspase-2 is expressed in most tissues and cell types. Cell fractionation and immunohistochemistry experiments show that caspase-2 is found in the nuclear and cytosolic fractions, including a significant portion present in the Golgi complex. We found that caspase-2 is processed in response to many apoptotic stimuli but experiments with caspase-2 deficient mice demonstrated that it is not required for apoptosis of thymocytes or dorsal root ganglia (DRG) neurons in response to a variety of cytotoxic stimuli. Caspase-2 processing does not occur in thymocytes lacking Apaf-1 or caspase-9, suggesting that in this cell type, activation of caspase-2 occurs downstream of apoptosome formation.

Original publication




Journal article

Publication Date





832 - 841


Animals, Antibodies, Monoclonal, Antibody Specificity, Apoptosis, Apoptotic Protease-Activating Factor 1, Caspase 2, Caspase 9, Caspases, Cell Nucleus, Female, Ganglia, Spinal, Gene Expression Regulation, Enzymologic, Golgi Apparatus, HeLa Cells, Humans, Male, Mice, Mice, Inbred C57BL, Mice, Knockout, Neurons, Proteins, Rats, Rats, Wistar, Signal Transduction, T-Lymphocytes