Induction of cell death by adenoviruses

Apoptosis. 2001 Oct;6(5):359-70. doi: 10.1023/a:1011338119712.


Adenoviruses have proved to be excellent tools for gaining insight into the regulation, and deregulation, of the mammalian cell cycle. With the widespread clinical use of gene therapy fast approaching, there comes a need for a better understanding of how the cell death process is regulated. A greater understanding will allow the development of therapeutic approaches that both maximise transgene expression while minimising cytotoxicity to the target cell. Consequently, much adenovirus research has centered on understanding the mechanisms governing adenovirus induced cell death or apoptosis. This review discusses recent advances in the field of adenovirus cell death regulation and evaluates the roles of implicated gene products and their respective data. The data suggest the existence of multiple virus gene products involved in cell death regulation and point towards several distinct, yet related, cell death pathways. A discussion of the shortcomings of current adenoviral research, along with a proposed model based upon the data is also given.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adenoviridae / genetics
  • Adenoviridae / physiology*
  • Adenovirus Early Proteins / physiology
  • Animals
  • Apoptosis
  • Cell Death*
  • Genome, Viral
  • Humans
  • Models, Biological


  • Adenovirus Early Proteins