The mitochondrial apoptosome: a killer unleashed by the cytochrome seas

C Adrain, S J Martin

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

441 Citations (Scopus)


The caspase family of cysteine proteases have emerged as central regulators of apoptosis. Diverse cellular stresses trigger caspase activation by promoting release of mitochondrial components, including cytochrome c, into the cytoplasm. In turn, cytochrome c promotes the assembly of a caspase-activating complex termed the apoptosome. In this article, the apoptosome and its role in life and death decisions of cells are discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)390-7
Number of pages8
JournalTrends in Biochemical Sciences
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2001


  • Animals
  • Apoptosis
  • Caenorhabditis elegans/cytology
  • Caspases/metabolism
  • Cytochrome c Group/metabolism
  • Enzyme Activation
  • Mitochondria/enzymology
  • Organelles
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-bcl-2


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