The inhibitor of apoptosis proteins (IAPs) are a family of proteins that were chiefly known for their ability to inhibit apoptosis by blocking caspase activation or activity. Recent research has shown that cellular IAP1 (cIAP1), cIAP2, and X-linked IAP (XIAP) also regulate signaling by receptors of the innate immune system by ubiquitylating their substrates. These IAPs thereby act at the intersection of pathways leading to cell death and inflammation. Mutation of IAP genes can impair tissue homeostasis and is linked to several human diseases. Small-molecule IAP antagonists have been developed to treat certain malignant, infectious, and inflammatory diseases. Here, we will discuss recent advances in our understanding of the functions of cIAP1, cIAP2, and XIAP; the consequences of their mutation or dysregulation; and the therapeutic potential of IAP antagonist drugs.