One million cells in our bodies die every second—they commit suicide by a mechanism known as apoptosis. Apoptosis is essential for survival of the body as a whole and has critical roles in development and the immune system.
In his new book Means to an End, Doug Green provides a clear and comprehensive view of apoptosis and other death mechanisms. He examines the enzymes that perform the execution (caspases) and the molecular machinery that links their activation to signals that cause cell death, emphasizing the importance of BCL-2 proteins and cytochrome c released from mitochondria. Green also outlines the roles of cell death in embryogenesis, neuronal selection, and the development of self-tolerance in the immune system, explains how cell death defends the body against cancer, and traces the evolutionary origins of the apoptosis machinery back over a billion years.
This website represents an ongoing accompaniment to the book. It includes video material that could not be displayed in print, along with figures from the book, links to other websites, and a list of additional reading that Doug will continually update. It also provides a venue for Doug to post new insights into apoptosis and discuss queries with readers.
Contents List For The Book
Foreword, by Martin Raff
1. A Matter of Life and Death
2. Caspases and Their Substrates
3. Caspase Activation and Inhibition
4. The Mitochondrial Pathway of Apoptosis, Part I: MOMP and Beyond
5. The Mitochondrial Pathway of Apoptosis, Part II: The BCL-2 Protein Family
6. The Death Receptor Pathway of Apoptosis
7. Other Caspase Activation Platforms
8. Nonapoptotic Cell Death Pathways
9. The Burial: Clearance and Consequences
10. Cell Death in Development
11. Cell Death and Cancer
12. The Future of Death