Virus Infection and Death Receptor-Mediated Apoptosis

Viruses. 2017 Oct 27;9(11):316. doi: 10.3390/v9110316.


Virus infection can trigger extrinsic apoptosis. Cell-surface death receptors of the tumor necrosis factor family mediate this process. They either assist persistent viral infection or elicit the elimination of infected cells by the host. Death receptor-mediated apoptosis plays an important role in viral pathogenesis and the host antiviral response. Many viruses have acquired the capability to subvert death receptor-mediated apoptosis and evade the host immune response, mainly by virally encoded gene products that suppress death receptor-mediated apoptosis. In this review, we summarize the current information on virus infection and death receptor-mediated apoptosis, particularly focusing on the viral proteins that modulate death receptor-mediated apoptosis.

Keywords: death receptor; extrinsic apoptosis; host immune response; virus infection.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Apoptosis*
  • Host-Pathogen Interactions*
  • Humans
  • Immune Evasion
  • Receptors, Death Domain / metabolism*
  • Receptors, Tumor Necrosis Factor / metabolism*
  • Signal Transduction
  • Viral Proteins / metabolism
  • Virus Diseases / virology*
  • Virus Replication
  • Viruses / pathogenicity*


  • Receptors, Death Domain
  • Receptors, Tumor Necrosis Factor
  • Viral Proteins