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GEN’s editor in chief, John Sterling, interviews life science academic and biotech industry leaders on important research, technology, and trends. These podcasts will keep you informed with all the important details you need.

Investigators at the Medical Research Council in the U.K. have made an important advance in understanding the biological processes involved when cells are prompted to die. The work, published in Molecular Cell on August 14, may help scientists eventually develop new treatments for the many common diseases and conditions that occur when apoptosis goes wrong, says the study’s lead author.

During this week's podcast Dr. Marion MacFarlane reviews the process of apoptosis in a healthy body and describes what happens when normal apoptosis fails. She discusses the key role played by the CD95 receptor in the death-inducing-signaling-complex (DISC) and the paradoxical nature of this receptor.

Dr. MacFarlane provides the details about her group’s research report and describes how the work moves scientists a step closer to understanding how the DISC triggers apoptosis. In addition, Dr. MacFarlane talks about the implications of her team's findings for the development of novel therapies for diseases that occur when apoptosis goes awry.
Dr MacFarlane graduated from the University of Glasgow and was awarded her PhD in Molecular Toxicology at the University of Surrey, UK. Following a Wellcome Trust Postdoctoral Training Fellowship in Toxicology, Dr MacFarlane then moved to the UK MRC Toxicology Unit in Leicester where she is now a Principal Investigator and leads an MRC-funded research programme investigating 'Receptor-mediated Signalling and Cell Death.

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