Apoptosis-inducing factor (AIF), which is confined to mitochondria of normal healthy cells, was initially described by Kroemer and coworkers (Susin et al. 1999) as the first caspase-independent death effector. Under conditions of cell death induction, AIF is released from mitochondria and translocates to the nucleus where it contributes to chromatin condensation and DNA fragmentation, two features that are classically associated with apoptosis (Hangen et al. 2010a). Since its initial discovery, the structure of the AIF protein has been resolved and the AIFgene has been subjected to genetic manipulations in mice, flies, nematodes, and yeast, revealing the phylogenetically conserved contribution of AIF to cell death, as well as its crucial role in...
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