Regulation of the mitochondrial apoptosis-induced channel, MAC, by BCL-2 family proteins

Laurent M. Dejean, Sonia Martinez-Caballero, Stephen Manon, Kathleen W. Kinnally

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Programmed cell death or apoptosis is central to many physiological processes and pathological conditions such as organogenesis, tissue homeostasis, cancer, and neurodegenerative diseases. Bcl-2 family proteins tightly control this cell death program by regulating the permeabilization of the mitochondrial outer membrane and, hence, the release of cytochrome c and other pro-apoptotic factors. Control of the formation of the mitochondrial apoptosis-induced channel, or MAC, is central to the regulation of apoptosis by Bcl-2 family proteins. MAC is detected early in apoptosis by patch clamping the mitochondrial outer membrane. The focus of this review is on the regulation of MAC activity by Bcl-2 family proteins. The role of MAC as the putative cytochrome c release channel during early apoptosis and insights concerning its molecular composition are also discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)191-201
Number of pages11
JournalBiochimica et Biophysica Acta - Molecular Basis of Disease
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 2006


  • Apoptosis
  • Bax
  • Bcl-2
  • MAC
  • Mitochondrial apoptosis-induced channel
  • Patch clamp

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Medicine
  • Molecular Biology


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