Caspase function and the immune system

Sarita Sehra, Alexander L. Dent

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

10 Scopus citations


Caspases are key effector components of apoptosis, the process of programmed cell death. However, a large body of recent work has shown that caspase activity is necessary for several nonapoptotic cellular functions, such as proliferation, differentiation, survival, and the regulation of cytokine expression. In this review, we concentrate on the nonapoptotic functions of caspases and, in particular, on nonapoptotic roles of caspases in the immune system. Because of the involvement of caspases in promoting cell death, as well as cell proliferation and other nonapoptotic functions, studies involving the inhibition of caspases in vivo must be interpreted with caution.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)133-148
Number of pages16
JournalCritical reviews in immunology
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2006


  • Apoptosis
  • Caspases
  • Proliferation
  • T-cell development
  • Th2-cell differentiation
  • Z-VAD

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology

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