The Inhibitor of Apoptosis proteins (IAPs) are a family of proteins that are mainly known for their anti-apoptotic activity and ability to directly bind and inhibit caspases. Recent research has however revealed that they have extensive roles in governing numerous other cellular processes. IAPs are known to modulate ubiquitin (Ub)-dependent signaling pathways through their E3 ligase activity and influence activation of nuclear factor κB (NF-κB). In this review, we discuss the involvement of IAPs in individual hallmarks of cancer and the current status of therapies targeting these critical proteins.
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