Apoptosis-Inducing TNF Superfamily Ligands for Cancer Therapy

Olivia A Diaz Arguello, Hidde J Haisma*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

25 Citations (Scopus)
118 Downloads (Pure)


Cancer is a complex disease with apoptosis evasion as one of its hallmarks; therefore, apoptosis induction in transformed cells seems a promising approach as a cancer treatment. TNF apoptosis-inducing ligands, which are naturally present in the body and possess tumoricidal activity, are attractive candidates. The most studied proteins are TNF-α, FasL, and TNF-related apoptosis-inducing ligand (TRAIL). Over the years, different recombinant TNF family-derived apoptosis-inducing ligands and agonists have been designed. Their stability, specificity, and half-life have been improved because most of the TNF ligands have the disadvantages of having a short half-life and affinity to more than one receptor. Here, we review the outlook on apoptosis-inducing ligands as cancer treatments in diverse preclinical and clinical stages and summarize strategies of overcoming their natural limitations to improve their effectiveness.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1543
Number of pages22
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 27-Mar-2021



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