Apoptosis is programmed cell death which is essential for development and survival of living organisms. Itis a sequentially regulated suicidal programme where cells activate certain enzymes which dissolute their ownnuclear component and various protein component of nucleus and cytoplasm. Disturbance of this regulatorypathway may lead to various diseases like autoimmune diseases, neurodegenerative diseases and cancers. Thepotential mechanisms of apoptosis and its role in cancer are discussed. The ability of apoptosis to modulate thelife or death of a cell is also recognized for its immense therapeutic potential. Understanding the mechanismsfrom this review will give us better insight to the pathogenesis of various diseases including cancer and will opennew horizons to therapeutic approaches.