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Apoptotic Protease-Activating Factor 1: A CARD signaling adaptor protein that plays a role in the mitochondria-stimulated apoptosis (APOPTOSIS, INTRINSIC PATHWAY). It binds to CYTOCHROME C in the CYTOSOL to form an APOPTOSOMAL PROTEIN COMPLEX and activates INITIATOR CASPASES such as CASPASE 9.Apoptosis: One of the mechanisms by which CELL DEATH occurs (compare with NECROSIS and AUTOPHAGOCYTOSIS). Apoptosis is the mechanism responsible for the physiological deletion of cells and appears to be intrinsically programmed. It is characterized by distinctive morphologic changes in the nucleus and cytoplasm, chromatin cleavage at regularly spaced sites, and the endonucleolytic cleavage of genomic DNA; (DNA FRAGMENTATION); at internucleosomal sites. This mode of cell death serves as a balance to mitosis in regulating the size of animal tissues and in mediating pathologic processes associated with tumor growth.Caspase 9: A long pro-domain caspase that contains a caspase recruitment domain in its pro-domain region. Caspase 9 is activated during cell stress by mitochondria-derived proapoptotic factors and by CARD SIGNALING ADAPTOR PROTEINS such as APOPTOTIC PROTEASE-ACTIVATING FACTOR 1. It activates APOPTOSIS by cleaving and activating EFFECTOR CASPASES.Cytochromes c: Cytochromes of the c type that are found in eukaryotic MITOCHONDRIA. They serve as redox intermediates that accept electrons from MITOCHONDRIAL ELECTRON TRANSPORT COMPLEX III and transfer them to MITOCHONDRIAL ELECTRON TRANSPORT COMPLEX IV.Caspases: A family of intracellular CYSTEINE ENDOPEPTIDASES that play a role in regulating INFLAMMATION and APOPTOSIS. They specifically cleave peptides at a CYSTEINE amino acid that follows an ASPARTIC ACID residue. Caspases are activated by proteolytic cleavage of a precursor form to yield large and small subunits that form the enzyme. Since the cleavage site within precursors matches the specificity of caspases, sequential activation of precursors by activated caspases can occur.Cytochrome c Group: A group of cytochromes with covalent thioether linkages between either or both of the vinyl side chains of protoheme and the protein. (Enzyme Nomenclature, 1992, p539)Proteins: Linear POLYPEPTIDES that are synthesized on RIBOSOMES and may be further modified, crosslinked, cleaved, or assembled into complex proteins with several subunits. The specific sequence of AMINO ACIDS determines the shape the polypeptide will take, during PROTEIN FOLDING, and the function of the protein.