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Current Molecular Pharmacology


ISSN (Print): 1874-4672
ISSN (Online): 1874-4702

Review Article

Exploring the Mitochondrial Apoptotic Cell Death Landscape and Associated Components Serving as Molecular Targets, Primarily for Synthetic and Natural Drugs Targeting Oncology Therapeutics

Author(s): Ishnoor Kaur, Tapan Behl*, Monika Sachdeva, Simona Bungau and Thangavel Venkatachalam

Volume 14, Issue 6, 2021

Published on: 20 January, 2021

Article ID: e301221190507 Pages: 17

DOI: 10.2174/1874467214666210120145537

Price: $65


The role of mitochondria in the apoptosis signaling cell death pathway is regulated by extrinsic and intrinsic pathway, encompassing multiple components like the Bcl-2 family of proteins, death receptors, caspases, Smac/DIABLO, IAPs, Omi/HtrA2 and cytochrome c. These entities serve as effective molecular targets for numerous drugs targeting mitochondrial apoptotic pathways, mainly emphasizing oncology therapeutics. Defective apoptosis is an acquired hallmark of cancer cells, which promotes the establishment of apoptosis-targeting anti-cancer drugs in cancer treatment. The review provides an overview of the Bcl-2 inhibiting, IAPs antagonizing, caspase inhibiting and BH3 mimicking actions, mediated by anti-cancer drugs, rendering beneficial outcomes in different forms of cancer. The authors elaborate on the significance of synthetic and natural agents, targeting the mitochondrial apoptotic pathway, in ameliorating tumor cell growth in the body, and the specificity and effectiveness of these agents, motivating the researchers to explore mitochondrial apoptosis targeting of anti-tumor drugs of both herbal and synthetic origin. Thus, the review aims to predict this dynamic approach in oncology, simultaneously highlighting the challenges and future prospects, providing an opportunity to the experts to “go over with a fine tooth comb” in understanding this “programmed cell death pathway”, and establishing reliability and accuracy of this therapeutic paradigm in the upcoming future.

Keywords: Mitochondria, apoptosis signaling, extrinsic, intrinsic, molecular targets, anti-cancer drugs, programmed celldeath.

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