Bcl-2 blocks apoptosis in cells lacking mitochondrial DNA

We report that human mutant cell lines that lack mitochondrial DNA, and do not have a functional respiratory chain, can still be induced to die by apoptosis, and that they can be protected from apoptosis by the overexpression of bcl-2, suggesting that neither apoptosis nor the protective effect of bcl-2 depends on mitochondrial respiration

Michael D. Jacobson; Julia F. Burne; Michael P. King; Toshiyuki Miyashrta; John C. Reed; Martin C. Raff

2003

Scholarcy highlights

  • WHEN the mammalian proto-oncogene bcl-2 is overexpressed it can protect various types of cells both from normal and from experimentally induced apoptosis A but the molecular mechanisms involved are unknown
  • We report that human mutant cell lines that lack mitochondrial DNA, and do not have a functional respiratory chain, can still be induced to die by apoptosis, and that they can be protected from apoptosis by the overexpression of bcl-2, suggesting that neither apoptosis nor the protective effect of bcl-2 depends on mitochondrial respiration
  • We show that the Bcl-2 protein in overexpressing cells is associated with the nuclear envelope and endoplasmic reticulum, as well as with mitochondria

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