The Evolutionary and Functional Divergence of the Atg8 Autophagy Protein Superfamily

Varga, Virginia B. and Keresztes, Fanni and Sigmond, Tímea and Vellai, Tibor and Kovács, Tibor (2022) The Evolutionary and Functional Divergence of the Atg8 Autophagy Protein Superfamily. BIOLOGIA FUTURA : A QUARTERLY OF THE HUNGARIAN ACADEMY OF SCIENCES. ISSN 2676-8615 (print); 2676-8607 (online)

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Autophagy is a highly conserved self-degradation process of eukaryotic cells which is required for the efective elimination of damaged and unnecessary cytosolic constituents. Defects in the process can cause the intracellular accumulation of such damages, thereby leading to the senescence and subsequent loss of the afected cell. Defective autophagy hence is implicated in the development of various degenerative processes, including cancer, neurodegenerative diseases, diabetes, tissue atrophy and fbrosis, and immune defciency, as well as in accelerated aging. The autophagic process is mediated by numerous autophagy-related (ATG) proteins, among which the ATG8/LC3/GABARAP (Microtubule-associated protein 1A/1B-light chain 3/Gammaaminobutyric acid receptor-associated protein) superfamily has a pivotal role in the formation and maturation of autophagosome, a key (macro) autophagic structure (the autophagosome sequesters parts of the cytoplasm which are destined for breakdown). While in the unicellular yeast there is only a single ATG8 protein, metazoan systems usually contain more ATG8 paralogs. ATG8 paralogs generally display tissue-specifc expression patterns and their functions are not strictly restricted to autophagy. For example, GABARAP proteins also play a role in intracellular vesicle transport, and, in addition to autophagosome formation, ATG8 also functions in selective autophagy. In this review, we summarize the functional diversity of ATG8/LC3/GABARAP proteins, using tractable genetic models applied in autophagy research.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: Q Science / természettudomány > QH Natural history / természetrajz
Depositing User: PhD Tibor Kovács
Date Deposited: 22 Sep 2022 09:08
Last Modified: 18 Oct 2022 11:37

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