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Apoptosis and Its Role in Physiology

Axay Joshi; Nilufar Haque; Abdul Lateef; Ajay Patel; Pankaj Patel.

Apoptosis, a Programmed Cell Death (PCD), specifically refers to an energy-dependent, genetically controlled process by which unnecessary or damaged single cells self-destruct when the apoptosis genes are activated. The role of apoptosis in physiology is as significant as that of its counterpart, mitosis. It helps in maintaining cellular homeostasis in the animal body. The number of cells increase or decrease when there is alteration in apoptosis during normal development and aging or during disease. Abnormalities in cell death regulation may cause diseases/conditions. Some conditions are caused due to insufficient apoptosis whereas others due to excessive apoptosis. Presently, large numbers of synthetic and natural compounds have been discovered to be effective against certain diseases through the induction of apoptosis in their target cells.

Key words: Apoptosis;Caspase;Disease;Therapeutic intervention

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