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Horizonte Médico (Lima)

Print version ISSN 1727-558X


VÉLEZ, Pablo Andrés et al. The role of apoptosis in sepsis. Horiz. Med. [online]. 2020, vol.20, n.4, e1219. ISSN 1727-558X.

Sepsis is a life-threatening entity caused by a multiorgan dysfunction that generates a dysregulated host response to infection and, after several processes, results in immunosuppression. Today, there are several sepsis management strategies to reduce its multisystemic effect and improve survival, but none of them have shown clear efficacy. Therefore, latest studies focus on clarifying and seeking therapeutic alternatives based on the analysis of the molecular pathophysiology of sepsis, in order to enter a late period of continuous immunosuppression also known as immunoparalysis.

Apoptosis is a molecular and physiological mechanism, whose homeostasis is altered by the presence of sepsis. It causes the elimination of key cells of innate and adaptive immunity, which leads to an increased risk of-and often fatal- secondary infection. Several postmortem studies have confirmed that sepsis-induced immune cell apoptosis is a leading factor in the genesis of sepsis-related immunosuppression. It is believed that therapeutic strategies aimed at regulating apoptosis could improve survival. This review article describes the pathophysiological role of the apoptotic phenomenon in sepsis and its effect on the evolution of this entity.

Keywords : Sepsis; Apoptosis; Immunosuppression; Infections.

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