Mechanical aspects of apoptosome assembly

Curr Opin Cell Biol. 2006 Dec;18(6):677-84. doi: 10.1016/j.ceb.2006.09.006. Epub 2006 Oct 12.

Abstract

Killing a cell through apoptosis ultimately rests on the mechanical destruction of the structure and function of cellular machineries. Understanding the mechanics of one particular function is usually the last step in our quest to decipher the underlying molecular mechanism. Execution of apoptosis is initiated by the activation of initiator caspases, which is mediated by specific adaptor protein complexes generally known as apoptosomes. This review discusses the assembly, structure and function of the heptameric Apaf-1 apoptosome, the tetrameric CED-4 complex, the octameric Dark apoptosome, and the death-inducing signaling complex (DISC).

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Apoptosis / physiology*
  • Apoptosis Regulatory Proteins / genetics
  • Apoptosis Regulatory Proteins / metabolism
  • Apoptosomes / genetics
  • Apoptosomes / metabolism*
  • Apoptotic Protease-Activating Factor 1 / genetics
  • Apoptotic Protease-Activating Factor 1 / metabolism
  • Calcium-Binding Proteins / genetics
  • Calcium-Binding Proteins / metabolism
  • Caspases / genetics
  • Caspases / metabolism
  • Death Domain Receptor Signaling Adaptor Proteins / genetics
  • Death Domain Receptor Signaling Adaptor Proteins / metabolism
  • Drosophila Proteins / genetics
  • Drosophila Proteins / metabolism
  • Humans
  • Models, Molecular
  • Signal Transduction / physiology*

Substances

  • Apoptosis Regulatory Proteins
  • Apoptosomes
  • Apoptotic Protease-Activating Factor 1
  • CASP8AP2 protein, human
  • Calcium-Binding Proteins
  • Death Domain Receptor Signaling Adaptor Proteins
  • Drosophila Proteins
  • dark protein, Drosophila
  • Caspases