IMR Press / FBL / Volume 14 / Issue 4 / DOI: 10.2741/3318

Frontiers in Bioscience-Landmark (FBL) is published by IMR Press from Volume 26 Issue 5 (2021). Previous articles were published by another publisher on a subscription basis, and they are hosted by IMR Press on as a courtesy and upon agreement with Frontiers in Bioscience.

Open Access Article
Genetic cell culture screens reveal mitochondrial apoptosis control
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1 Imperial College London, Hammersmith Campus, London W12 0NN, UK
2 Imperial College London, Hammersmith Campus, London W12 0NN, UK
Academic Editor:Catherine Brenner
Front. Biosci. (Landmark Ed) 2009, 14(4), 1471–1478;
Published: 1 January 2009
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Apoptosis and mitochondria)

Recent years have witnessed an exponential increase in our knowledge about the cellular suicide programme of apoptosis. Historically, genetic screens in model organisms such as C.elegans and D. melanogaster were among the experiments that initiated this field. While mammalian cell culture systems did not seem to be amenable for screening, recent developments in high-throughput assays such as robotic instrumentation, the annotation of complete mammalian genomes and novel genetic tools such as RNA interference have led to a number of genetic screens in mammalian culture cells. Some of these screens were focussed on cell death and resulted in a considerable extension of our knowledge on apoptosis. Here we summarize the underlying concepts and the data that these genetic screens generated so far. The results indicate a complex range of signalling pathways in mammals. In particular, numerous signalling components in mitochondria have been discovered in this way in accordance with the prominent role of this organelle for cell death regulation.

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