Caspase activation is the 'point of no return' commitment to cell death. Synthesized as inactive zymogens, it is essential that the caspases remain inactive until the death signal is received. It is known for the downstream executioner caspases-3 and -7 that the activation event is proteolytic cleavage, and this had been assumed to apply to the initiator caspases as well. However, recent studies conducted on caspases-2, -8 and -9 have challenged this tenet of caspase activation. In this review we focus on the molecular details of caspase activation, with emphasis on recent work that provides a pleasing explanation for the differential requirements for the activation of executioner and initiator caspases.
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Jeremy Saklatvala; Hideaki Nagase; Guy Salvesen
Conference Article| September 01 2003
Kelly M. Boatright ;
Guy S. Salvesen
Guy S. Salvesen 1
*The Program in Apoptosis and Cell Death, The Burnham Institute, 10901 North Torrey Pines Road, La Jolla, CA 92037, U.S.A.
†Department of Molecular Pathology, University of California San Diego, La Jolla, CA 92037, U.S.A.
1To whom correspondence should be addressed (e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org).
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Biochem Soc Symp (2003) 70: 233–242.
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Jeremy Saklatvala, Hideaki Nagase, Guy Salvesen, Kelly M. Boatright, Guy S. Salvesen; Caspase activation. Biochem Soc Symp 1 September 2003; 70 233–242. doi: https://doi.org/10.1042/bss0700233
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