Chinese hamster ovary (CHO) cells are widely used in biopharmaceutical production. Improvements to cell lines and bioprocesses are constantly being explored. One of the major limitations of CHO cell culture is that the cells undergo apoptosis, leading to rapid cell death, which impedes reaching high recombinant protein titres. While several genetic engineering strategies have been successfully employed to reduce apoptosis, there is still room to further enhance CHO cell lines performance. ‘Omics analysis is a powerful tool to better understand different phenotypes and for the identification of gene targets for engineering. Here, we present a comprehensive review of previous CHO 'omics studies that revealed changes in the expression of apoptosis-related genes. We highlight targets for genetic engineering that have reduced, or have the potential to reduce, apoptosis or to increase cell proliferation in CHO cells, with the final aim of increasing productivity.