Cell death and cancer therapy

Curr Opin Pharmacol. 2001 Aug;1(4):337-41. doi: 10.1016/s1471-4892(01)00059-5.


Successful cancer therapy requires the selective killing of cancer cells. Many molecular components of the pathways that lead to cell death have recently been identified and a number of these, including p53, Apaf-1, and members of the inhibitor of apoptosis protein and Bcl-2 gene families, have been found to be altered or disregulated in many cancers. These recent advances and the ongoing elucidation of how these pathways work is providing clues as to how therapeutically resistant cancers might be attacked.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antineoplastic Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Apoptosis / drug effects
  • Apoptosis / genetics
  • Cell Death / genetics
  • Cell Death / physiology*
  • Genes, bcl-2 / genetics
  • Genes, p53 / genetics
  • Humans
  • Neoplasms / drug therapy*
  • Neoplasms / genetics
  • Neoplasms / pathology*


  • Antineoplastic Agents