Molecular mechanisms of cell death in neurological diseases
Journal Title
Cell Death and Differentiation
Publication Type
epub ahead of print
Tightly orchestrated programmed cell death (PCD) signalling events occur during normal neuronal development in a spatially and temporally restricted manner to establish the neural architecture and shaping the CNS. Abnormalities in PCD signalling cascades, such as apoptosis, necroptosis, pyroptosis, ferroptosis, and cell death associated with autophagy as well as in unprogrammed necrosis can be observed in the pathogenesis of various neurological diseases. These cell deaths can be activated in response to various forms of cellular stress (exerted by intracellular or extracellular stimuli) and inflammatory processes. Aberrant activation of PCD pathways is a common feature in neurodegenerative diseases, such as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, and Huntington's disease, resulting in unwanted loss of neuronal cells and function. Conversely, inactivation of PCD is thought to contribute to the development of brain cancers and to impact their response to therapy. For many neurodegenerative diseases and brain cancers current treatment strategies have only modest effect, engendering the need for investigations into the origins of these diseases. With many diseases of the brain displaying aberrations in PCD pathways, it appears that agents that can either inhibit or induce PCD may be critical components of future therapeutic strategies. The development of such therapies will have to be guided by preclinical studies in animal models that faithfully mimic the human disease. In this review, we briefly describe PCD and unprogrammed cell death processes and the roles they play in contributing to neurodegenerative diseases or tumorigenesis in the brain. We also discuss the interplay between distinct cell death signalling cascades and disease pathogenesis and describe pharmacological agents targeting key players in the cell death signalling pathways that have progressed through to clinical trials.
WEHI Research Division(s)
Blood Cells And Blood Cancer
PubMed ID
Open Access at Publisher's Site
Rights Notice
Refer to copyright notice on published article.

Creation Date: 2021-06-10 11:47:06
Last Modified: 2021-06-10 12:09:53
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