Phagocytic clearance of dying cells is found in many phagocytes. It has been shown that dying cells can be phagocytosed by other phagocytic cells through autophagic or apoptotic cellular death. To date, whether cancer cells have such phagocytic activity has not been studied. In this study, our data shows that RC-RNase can trigger cell death in human breast cancer MCF-7 cells through the apoptotic pathway. Interestingly, when treated with cytotoxic protein, the remaining MCF-7 cells can phagocytose the dying MCF-7 cells via autophagocytic activity, demonstrated directly by real-time image observation and electron microscopy analysis. To sum up, this study demonstrates for the first time that RC-RNase can trigger apoptosis and autophagocytosis in MCF-7 cancer cells."