Apoptosis, or programmed cell death, is a natural process by which damaged or unwanted cells are dismantled in an orderly and atraumatic fashion. It is of critical importance in development, homeostasis, and cell population control. Recent research is now enabling scientists to comprehend how genes and their protein products interact to control apoptosis. This has led to the position where researchers may be able to directly modify the action of key proteins through gene therapy and antisense oligonucleotides. This text presents an overview of the key genes involved in the control of apoptosis, together with thoughts on future prospects and clinical applications. The volume deals specifically with the regulation of apoptosis. Given the increased interest in the role of apoptosis genes in disease processes, this work should be useful to researchers investigating cancer, autoimmune disease, viral infection, cardiovascular disease, neurodegenerative disorders, AIDS, osteoporosis, and ageing.