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Unwanted cells are removed by physiological cell death processes that are highly conserved throughout the animal kingdom. Physiological cell death plays an important role in development, tissue homeostasis and defence against viral infection and mutation. This review describes the molecular components that implement this process, the relevance of these to a variety of human diseases, and discusses the potential for novel therapies based on our understanding of them.

Type

Journal article

Journal

Pharmacol Ther

Publication Date

1996

Volume

72

Pages

37 - 50

Keywords

Animals, Apoptosis, Caenorhabditis elegans, Caspase 1, Cysteine Endopeptidases, Gene Expression Regulation, Genes, Tumor Suppressor, Genes, Viral, Granzymes, HIV, Humans, Membrane Glycoproteins, Perforin, Pore Forming Cytotoxic Proteins, Receptors, Tumor Necrosis Factor, Serine Endopeptidases, Terminology as Topic