Part of the book: Current Frontiers and Perspectives in Cell Biology
Part of the book: Chromatin Remodelling
Cell death plays an important role in tumorigenesis, growth, and progression and affects the efficiency of chemotherapy to a great extent. Apoptosis is usually regarded as the principal mechanism of chemotherapy-induced cell death. However, the dysregulation of apoptosis occurs commonly in many cancers, which lowers the effectiveness of therapy and allows cells to survive. The mechanisms by which cells acquire this resistance to chemotherapy are not fully understood. Several studies uncovered alternative cell death pathways that are mechanistically distinct from apoptosis. These pathways, including autophagy and necrosis, represent potential targets for novel cancer treatment. By modulating the key regulatory molecules involved in the different types of cell death, more effective and less toxic chemotherapy might be developed. In this chapter, we describe the signaling pathways and the molecular events that are involved in these three major forms of programmed cell death. Additionally, we also discuss the emerging therapies targeting these cell death pathways as new strategies against cancer.
Part of the book: Cell Biology
Globally, more than 300 million people are asthmatics and this number has been estimated to become 400 million by 2025. Asthma is a chronic inflammatory condition, which, although has no cure, is treatable in most patients. The most common structural alterations in asthmatic airways include thickening of the epithelial and sub epithelial layers, increased airway smooth muscle mass, and angiogenesis. Several genetically controlled factors greatly influence the predisposition and severity of allergic asthma. Twin studies have attributed as much as 75% of asthma susceptibility to heredity. Particularly, genome-wide association studies (GWASs) have discovered several asthma and/or atopy susceptibility genes. Current treatment protocols for managing asthma involve the use of corticosteroids and β-agonists. Over the last 40 years, there has been a marked development-targeted therapy for asthma, such as anti-leukotrienes, anti-immunoglobulin (Ig)E, anti-tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-α, and anti-interleukins (ILs) (Th2 cytokines). To identify novel targets and to develop newer drug generations, better understanding of asthma molecular pathophysiology is required. Furthermore, the pharmacogenetic studies, focusing on better understanding of beneficial or/and adverse effects to anti-asthma drugs, will also facilitate the development of more effective and targeted treatments in specific subpopulations of patients suffering from asthma.
Part of the book: Asthma