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Cell Res. 2018 Jan;28(1):9-21. doi: 10.1038/cr.2017.133. Epub 2017 Oct 27.

Plasma membrane changes during programmed cell deaths.

Author information

1
State Key Laboratory of Cellular Stress Biology, Innovation Center for Cell Signaling Network, School of Life Sciences, Xiamen University, Xiamen, Fujian 361005, China.
2
Laboratoire de Biologie Moléculaire du Gène, Faculté des Sciences, Université Libre de Bruxelles, 1050 Brussels, Belgium.

Abstract

Ruptured and intact plasma membranes are classically considered as hallmarks of necrotic and apoptotic cell death, respectively. As such, apoptosis is usually considered a non-inflammatory process while necrosis triggers inflammation. Recent studies on necroptosis and pyroptosis, two types of programmed necrosis, revealed that plasma membrane rupture is mediated by MLKL channels during necroptosis but depends on non-selective gasdermin D (GSDMD) pores during pyroptosis. Importantly, the morphology of dying cells executed by MLKL channels can be distinguished from that executed by GSDMD pores. Interestingly, it was found recently that secondary necrosis of apoptotic cells, a previously believed non-regulated form of cell lysis that occurs after apoptosis, can be programmed and executed by plasma membrane pore formation like that of pyroptosis. In addition, pyroptosis is associated with pyroptotic bodies, which have some similarities to apoptotic bodies. Therefore, different cell death programs induce distinctive reshuffling processes of the plasma membrane. Given the fact that the nature of released intracellular contents plays a crucial role in dying/dead cell-induced immunogenicity, not only membrane rupture or integrity but also the nature of plasma membrane breakdown would determine the fate of a cell as well as its ability to elicit an immune response. In this review, we will discuss recent advances in the field of apoptosis, necroptosis and pyroptosis, with an emphasis on the mechanisms underlying plasma membrane changes observed on dying cells and their implication in cell death-elicited immunogenicity.

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