Characteristics and Biomarkers of Ferroptosis

Xin Chen, Paul B. Comish, Daolin Tang, Rui Kang

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

160 Scopus citations


The induction and consequences of regulated cell death (RCD) are accompanied by changes in gene and protein expression, biochemical pathways, as well as cell morphology and size. Such RCDs have a significant impact on development, tissue homeostasis, and the occurrence and progression of disease. Among different forms of RCD, ferroptosis appears to be the main cause of tissue damage driven by iron overload and lipid peroxidation. In fact, the dysfunctional ferroptotic response is implicated in a variety of pathological conditions and diseases, such as neurodegenerative diseases, tissue ischemia-reperfusion injury, tumorigenesis, infections, and immune diseases. Ferroptotic response can be fine-tuned through various oxidative stress and antioxidant defense pathways, coupling with metabolism, gene transcription, and protein degradation machinery. Accordingly, a series of ferroptosis inducers or inhibitors targeting redox- or iron metabolism-related proteins or signal transduction have been developed. Although this kind of RCD has recently attracted great interest in basic and clinical research, detecting and monitoring a ferroptotic response still faces challenges. In this mini-review, we not only summarize the latest knowledge about the characteristics of ferroptosis in vitro and in vivo, but also discuss the specificity and limitations of current biomarkers of ferroptosis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number637162
JournalFrontiers in Cell and Developmental Biology
StatePublished - Jan 21 2021


  • biomarker
  • cell death
  • ferroptosis
  • iron metabolism
  • lipid perioxidation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Developmental Biology
  • Cell Biology


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