bims-auttor Biomed News
on Autophagy and mTOR
Issue of 2022‒09‒11
fifty-two papers selected by
Viktor Korolchuk, Newcastle University

  1. Methods Mol Biol. 2022 ;2543 71-82
      In conditions of cellular stress and nutrient shortage, macroautophagy (hereafter referred to as autophagy) assures the degradation of dysfunctional macromolecules and organelles as it liberates energy resources via the breakdown of dispensable cellular components. Morphologically, autophagy is characterized by the formation of double-membraned autophagosomes that facilitate the isolation of autophagic cargo for subsequent lysosomal degradation at low pH. Sequestosome-1 (SQSTM1, better known as ubiquitin-binding protein p62), is an autophagosomal cargo receptor that targets proteins for selective autophagic degradation. Indeed, the redistribution of tandem mCherry and enhanced green fluorescent protein (mCherry-EGFP)-conjugated p62 from the cytosol into nascent autophagosomes constitutes a phenotype applicable to microscopic analysis. Furthermore, the differential pH sensitivity of mCherry and EGFP allows the visualization of autophagic flux due to the selective decrease of the EGFP signal upon fusion of autophagosomes with lysosomes. Here, we describe a method employing automated confocal cellular imaging for the study of autophagic degradation that is amenable to systems biology approaches.
    Keywords:  Autophagic flux; Autophagy; Image analysis; Lysosomal degradation
  2. Cells. 2022 Aug 23. pii: 2621. [Epub ahead of print]11(17):
      Autophagy is an evolutionally conserved degradation mechanism for maintaining cell homeostasis whereby cytoplasmic components are wrapped in autophagosomes and subsequently delivered to lysosomes for degradation. This process requires the concerted actions of multiple autophagy-related proteins and accessory regulators. In neurons, autophagy is dynamically regulated in different compartments including soma, axons, and dendrites. It determines the turnover of selected materials in a spatiotemporal control manner, which facilitates the formation of specialized neuronal functions. It is not surprising, therefore, that dysfunctional autophagy occurs in epilepsy, mainly caused by an imbalance between excitation and inhibition in the brain. In recent years, much attention has been focused on how autophagy may cause the development of epilepsy. In this article, we overview the historical landmarks and distinct types of autophagy, recent progress in the core machinery and regulation of autophagy, and biological roles of autophagy in homeostatic maintenance of neuronal structures and functions, with a particular focus on synaptic plasticity. We also discuss the relevance of autophagy mechanisms to the pathophysiology of epileptogenesis.
    Keywords:  autophagosome; autophagy; epilepsy; mTOR; pathological mechanism; synapse
  3. Cell Biochem Funct. 2022 Sep 05.
      Autophagy, an intracellular conserved degradative process, plays a central role in the renewal/recycling of a cell to maintain the homeostasis of nutrients and energy within the cell. ATG5, a key component of autophagy, regulates the formation of the autophagosome, a hallmark of autophagy. ATG5 binds with ATG12 and ATG16L1 resulting in E3 like ligase complex, which is necessary for autophagosome expansion. Available data suggest that ATG5 is indispensable for autophagy and has an imperative role in several essential biological processes. Moreover, ATG5 has also been demonstrated to possess autophagy-independent functions that magnify its significance and therapeutic potential. ATG5 interacts with various molecules for the execution of different processes implicated during physiological and pathological conditions. Furthermore, ATG5 genetic variants are associated with various ailments. This review discusses various autophagy-dependent and autophagy-independent roles of ATG5, highlights its various deleterious genetic variants reported until now, and various studies supporting it as a potential drug target.
    Keywords:  ATG12-ATG5/ATG16L1; ATG5; ATG5 polymorphism; autophagosome; autophagy
  4. Aging Cell. 2022 Sep 10. e13707
      Senescent cells accumulate in tissues over time, favoring the onset and progression of multiple age-related diseases. Senescent cells present a remarkable increase in lysosomal mass and elevated autophagic activity. Here, we report that two main autophagic pathways macroautophagy (MA) and chaperone-mediated autophagy (CMA) are constitutively upregulated in senescent cells. Proteomic analyses of the subpopulations of lysosomes preferentially engaged in each of these types of autophagy revealed profound quantitative and qualitative changes in senescent cells, affecting both lysosomal resident proteins and cargo proteins delivered to lysosomes for degradation. These studies have led us to identify resident lysosomal proteins that are highly augmented in senescent cells and can be used as novel markers of senescence, such as arylsulfatase ARSA. The abundant secretome of senescent cells, known as SASP, is considered their main pathological mediator; however, little is known about the mechanisms of SASP secretion. Some secretory cells, including melanocytes, use the small GTPase RAB27A to perform lysosomal secretion. We found that this process is exacerbated in the case of senescent melanoma cells, as revealed by the exposure of lysosomal membrane integral proteins LAMP1 and LAMP2 in their plasma membrane. Interestingly, a subset of SASP components, including cytokines CCL2, CCL3, CXCL12, cathepsin CTSD, or the protease inhibitor SERPINE1, are secreted in a RAB27A-dependent manner in senescent melanoma cells. Finally, proteins previously identified as plasma biomarkers of aging are highly enriched in the lysosomes of senescent cells, including CTSD. We conclude that the lysosomal proteome of senescent cells is profoundly reconfigured, and that some senescent cells can be highly active in lysosomal exocytosis.
    Keywords:  SASP; aging; autophagy; cellular senescence; exocytosis; lysosome
  5. Am J Physiol Cell Physiol. 2022 Sep 05.
      Mechanistic target of rapamycin (mTOR) is a serine-threonine kinase and a cellular sensor for nutrient and energy status, which is critical in regulating cell metabolism and growth by governing the anabolic (protein and lipid synthesis) and catabolic process (autophagy). Alcohol-associated liver disease (ALD) is a major chronic liver disease worldwide that carries a huge financial burden. The spectrum of the pathogenesis of ALD includes steatosis, fibrosis, inflammation, ductular reaction and eventual hepatocellular carcinoma, which is closely associated with metabolic changes that are regulated by mTOR. In this review, we summarized recent progress of alcohol consumption on the changes of mTORC1 and mTORC2 activity, the potential mechanisms and possible impact of the mTORC1 changes on autophagy in ALD. We also discussed the potential beneficial effects and limitations of targeting mTORC1 against ALD.
    Keywords:  ALD; Autophagy; MTOR; TFEB; ethanol
  6. Mol Cells. 2022 Sep 30. 45(9): 649-659
      A long-term energy nutritional imbalance fundamentally causes the development of obesity and associated fat accumulation. Lysosomes, as nutrient-sensing and lipophagy centers, critically control cellular lipid catabolism in response to nutrient deprivation. However, whether lysosome activity is directly involved in nutrient-induced fat accumulation remains unclear. In this study, worm fat accumulation was induced by 1 mM glucose or 0.02 mM palmitic acid supplementation. Along with the elevation of fat accumulation, lysosomal number and acidification were also increased, suggesting that lysosome activity might be correlated with nutrient-induced fat deposition in Caenorhabditis elegans. Furthermore, treatments with the lysosomal inhibitors chloroquine and leupeptin significantly reduced basal and nutrient-induced fat accumulation in C. elegans. The knockdown of hlh-30, which is a critical gene in lysosomal biogenesis, also resulted in worm fat loss. Finally, the mutation of aak-2, daf-15, and rsks-1 showed that mTORC1 (mechanistic target of rapamycin complex-1) signaling mediated the effects of lysosomes on basal and nutrient-induced fat accumulation in C. elegans. Overall, this study reveals the previously undescribed role of lysosomes in overnutrition sensing, suggesting a new strategy for controlling body fat accumulation.
    Keywords:  Caenorhabditis elegans; fat accumulation; lysosome; nutrient
  7. Front Cell Dev Biol. 2022 ;10 920683
      Osteoclasts are bone-resorbing cells that undergo extensive changes in morphology throughout their differentiation. Altered osteoclast differentiation and activity lead to changes in pathological bone resorption. The mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR) is a kinase, and aberrant mTOR complex 1 (mTORC1) signaling is associated with altered bone homeostasis. The activation of mTORC1 is biphasically regulated during osteoclastogenesis; however, the mechanism behind mTORC1-mediated regulation of osteoclastogenesis and bone resorption is incompletely understood. Here, we found that MYC coordinates the dynamic regulation of mTORC1 activation during osteoclastogenesis. MYC-deficiency blocked the early activation of mTORC1 and also reversed the decreased activity of mTORC1 at the late stage of osteoclastogenesis. The suppression of mTORC1 activity by rapamycin in mature osteoclasts enhances bone resorption activity despite the indispensable role of high mTORC1 activation in osteoclast formation in both mouse and human cells. Mechanistically, MYC induces Growth arrest and DNA damage-inducible protein (GADD34) expression and suppresses mTORC1 activity at the late phase of osteoclastogenesis. Taken together, our findings identify a MYC-GADD34 axis as an upstream regulator of dynamic mTORC1 activation in osteoclastogenesis and highlight the interplay between MYC and mTORC1 pathways in determining osteoclast activity.
    Keywords:  GADD34 (PPP1R15A); MYC (c-myc); bone resorption; mTORC1 (mechanistic target of rapamycin complex 1); osteoclast (OC)
  8. Cells. 2022 Aug 30. pii: 2706. [Epub ahead of print]11(17):
      Neuronal oxidative stress caused by mitochondrial dysfunction plays a crucial role in the development of Parkinson's disease (PD). Growing evidence shows that autophagy confers neuroprotection in oxidative-stress-associated PD. This work aims to investigate the involvement of TMEM166, an endoplasmic-reticulum-localized autophagy-regulating protein, in the process of PD-associated oxidative stress through the classic cellular PD model of neuroblastoma SH-SY5Y cells exposed to 1-methyl-4-phenylpyridinium (MPP+). Reactive oxygen species (ROS) production and mitochondrial membrane potential were checked to assess the oxidative stress induced by MPP+ and the cellular ATP generated was determined to evaluate mitochondrial function. The effect on autophagy induction was evaluated by analyzing p62 and LC3-II/I expression and by observing the LC3 puncta and the colocalization of LC3 with LAMP1/ LAMP2. The colocalization of mitochondria with LC3, the colocalization of Tom20 with LAMP1 and Tom20 expression were analyzed to evaluate mitophagy. We found that TMEM166 is up-regulated in transcript levels, but up-regulated first and then down-regulated by autophagic degradation in protein levels upon MPP+-treatment. Overexpression of TMEM166 induces mitochondria fragmentation and dysfunction and exacerbates MPP+-induced oxidative stress and cell viability reduction. Overexpression of TMEM166 is sufficient to induce autophagy and mitophagy and promotes autophagy and mitophagy under MPP+ treatment, while knockdown of TMEM166 inhibits basal autophagic degradation. In addition, overexpressed TMEM166 suppresses AMPK activation, while TMEM166 knockdown enhances AMPK activation. Pharmacological activation of AMPK alleviates the exacerbation of oxidative stress induced by TMEM166 overexpression and increases cell viability, while pharmacological inhibition mitophagy aggravates the oxidative stress induced by MPP+ treatment combined with TMEM166 overexpression. Finally, we find that overexpressed TMEM166 partially localizes to mitochondria and, simultaneously, the active AMPK in mitochondria is decreased. Collectively, these findings suggest that TMEM166 can translocate from ER to mitochondria and inhibit AMPK activation and, in response to mitochondrial oxidative stress, neuronal cells choose to up-regulate TMEM166 to promote autophagy/mitophagy; then, the enhancing autophagy/mitophagy degrades the TMEM166 to activate AMPK, by the two means to maintain cell survival. The continuous synthesis and degradation of TMEM166 in autophagy/mitochondria flux suggest that TMEM166 may act as an autophagy/mitochondria adaptor.
    Keywords:  AMPK; EVA1A; PINK1/Parkin; Parkinson’s disease; SH-SY5Y cells; TMEM166; autophagy; mitochondria; mitophagy; oxidative stress
  9. PLoS Pathog. 2022 Sep 06. 18(9): e1010808
      Previous studies have shown that the mechanistic target of rapamycin complex 1 (mTORC1) signaling pathway has antiviral functions or is beneficial for viral replication, however, the detail mechanisms by which mTORC1 enhances viral infection remain unclear. Here, we found that proliferation of white spot syndrome virus (WSSV) was decreased after knockdown of mTor (mechanistic target of rapamycin) or injection inhibitor of mTORC1, rapamycin, in Marsupenaeus japonicus, which suggests that mTORC1 is utilized by WSSV for its replication in shrimp. Mechanistically, WSSV infects shrimp by binding to its receptor, polymeric immunoglobulin receptor (pIgR), and induces the interaction of its intracellular domain with Calmodulin. Calmodulin then promotes the activation of protein kinase B (AKT) by interaction with the pleckstrin homology (PH) domain of AKT. Activated AKT phosphorylates mTOR and results in the activation of the mTORC1 signaling pathway to promote its downstream effectors, ribosomal protein S6 kinase (S6Ks), for viral protein translation. Moreover, mTORC1 also phosphorylates eukaryotic translation initiation factor 4E-binding protein 1 (4EBP1), which will result in the separation of 4EBP1 from eukaryotic translation initiation factor 4E (eIF4E) for the translation of viral proteins in shrimp. Our data revealed a novel pathway for WSSV proliferation in shrimp and indicated that mTORC1 may represent a potential clinical target for WSSV control in shrimp aquaculture.
  10. Nature. 2022 Sep 07.
      Lysosomal dysfunction has been increasingly linked to disease and normal ageing1,2. Lysosomal membrane permeabilization (LMP), a hallmark of lysosome-related diseases, can be triggered by diverse cellular stressors3. Given the damaging contents of lysosomes, LMP must be rapidly resolved, although the underlying mechanisms are poorly understood. Here, using an unbiased proteomic approach, we show that LMP stimulates a phosphoinositide-initiated membrane tethering and lipid transport (PITT) pathway for rapid lysosomal repair. Upon LMP, phosphatidylinositol-4 kinase type 2α (PI4K2A) accumulates rapidly on damaged lysosomes, generating high levels of the lipid messenger phosphatidylinositol-4-phosphate. Lysosomal phosphatidylinositol-4-phosphate in turn recruits multiple oxysterol-binding protein (OSBP)-related protein (ORP) family members, including ORP9, ORP10, ORP11 and OSBP, to orchestrate extensive new membrane contact sites between damaged lysosomes and the endoplasmic reticulum. The ORPs subsequently catalyse robust endoplasmic reticulum-to-lysosome transfer of phosphatidylserine and cholesterol to support rapid lysosomal repair. Finally, the lipid transfer protein ATG2 is also recruited to damaged lysosomes where its activity is potently stimulated by phosphatidylserine. Independent of macroautophagy, ATG2 mediates rapid membrane repair through direct lysosomal lipid transfer. Together, our findings identify that the PITT pathway maintains lysosomal membrane integrity, with important implications for numerous age-related diseases characterized by impaired lysosomal function.
  11. Heliyon. 2022 Aug;8(8): e10371
      Cardiomyopathy is a primary cause of death in Friedreich ataxia (FRDA) patients with defective iron-sulfur cluster (ISC) biogenesis due to loss of functional frataxin and in rare patients with functional loss of other ISC biogenesis factors. The mechanistic target of rapamycin (mTOR) and AKT signaling cascades that coordinate eukaryotic cell growth and metabolism with environmental inputs, including nutrients and growth factors, are crucial regulators of cardiovascular growth and homeostasis. We observed increased phosphorylation of AKT and dysregulation of multiple downstream effectors of mTORC1, including S6K1, S6, ULK1 and 4EBP1, in a cardiac/skeletal muscle specific FRDA conditional knockout (cKO) mouse model and in human cell lines depleted of ISC biogenesis factors. Knockdown of several mitochondrial metabolic proteins that are downstream targets of ISC biogenesis, including lipoyl synthase and subunit B of succinate dehydrogenase, also resulted in activation of mTOR and AKT signaling, suggesting that mTOR and AKT hyperactivations are part of the metabolic stress response to ISC deficiencies. Administration of rapamycin, a specific inhibitor of mTOR signaling, enhanced the survival of the Fxn cKO mice, providing proof of concept for the potential of mTOR inhibition to ameliorate cardiac disease in patients with defective ISC biogenesis. However, AKT phosphorylation remained high in rapamycin-treated Fxn cKO hearts, suggesting that parallel mTOR and AKT inhibition might be necessary to further improve the lifespan and healthspan of ISC deficient individuals.
    Keywords:  AKT; Cardiac hypertrophy; FXN; Frataxin; Friedreich ataxia; ISCU; Iron-sulfur cluster biogenesis; Metabolic stress; mTOR
  12. J Cell Biol. 2022 Oct 03. pii: e202203102. [Epub ahead of print]221(10):
      A ferritin particle consists of 24 ferritin proteins (FTH1 and FTL) and stores iron ions within it. During iron deficiency, ferritin particles are transported to lysosomes to release iron ions. Two transport pathways have been reported: macroautophagy and ESCRT-dependent endosomal microautophagy. Although the membrane dynamics of these pathways differ, both require NCOA4, which is thought to be an autophagy receptor for ferritin. However, it is unclear whether NCOA4 only acts as an autophagy receptor in ferritin degradation. Here, we found that ferritin particles form liquid-like condensates in a NCOA4-dependent manner. Homodimerization of NCOA4 and interaction between FTH1 and NCOA4 (i.e., multivalent interactions between ferritin particles and NCOA4) were required for the formation of ferritin condensates. Disruption of these interactions impaired ferritin degradation. Time-lapse imaging and three-dimensional correlative light and electron microscopy revealed that these ferritin-NCOA4 condensates were directly engulfed by autophagosomes and endosomes. In contrast, TAX1BP1 was not required for the formation of ferritin-NCOA4 condensates but was required for their incorporation into autophagosomes and endosomes. These results suggest that NCOA4 acts not only as a canonical autophagy receptor but also as a driver to form ferritin condensates to facilitate the degradation of these condensates by macroautophagy (i.e., macroferritinophagy) and endosomal microautophagy (i.e., microferritinophagy).
  13. Front Pharmacol. 2022 ;13 974829
      Autophagy is a highly conserved cellular progress for the degradation of cytoplasmic contents including micromolecules, misfolded proteins, and damaged organelles that has recently captured attention in kidney diseases. Basal autophagy plays a pivotal role in maintaining cell survival and kidney homeostasis. Accordingly, dysregulation of autophagy has implicated in the pathologies of kidney diseases. In this review, we summarize the multifaceted role of autophagy in kidney aging, maladaptive repair, tubulointerstitial fibrosis and discuss autophagy-related drugs in kidney diseases. However, uncertainty still remains as to the precise mechanisms of autophagy in kidney diseases. Further research is needed to clarify the accurate molecular mechanism of autophagy in kidney diseases, which will facilitate the discovery of a promising strategy for the prevention and treatment of kidney diseases.
    Keywords:  acute kidney injury; autophagy; chronic kidney disease; kidney aging; kidney fibrosis
  14. Curr Cancer Drug Targets. 2022 ;22(9): 749-756
      Basal autophagy plays a crucial role in maintaining intracellular homeostasis and prevents the cell from escaping the cell cycle regulation mechanisms and being cancerous. Mitophagy and nucleophagy are essential for cell health. Autophagy plays a pivotal role in cancer cell transformation, where upregulated precancerous autophagy induces apoptosis. Impaired autophagy has been shown to upregulate cancer cell transformation. However, tumor cells upregulate autophagy to escape elimination and survive the unfavorable conditions and resistance to chemotherapy. Cancer cells promote autophagy through modulation of autophagy regulation mechanisms and increase expression of the autophagyrelated genes. Whereas, autophagy regulation mechanisms involved microRNAs, transcription factors, and the internalized signaling pathways such as AMPK, mTOR, III PI3K, and ULK-1. Disrupted regulatory mechanisms are various as the cancer cell polymorphism. Targeting a higher level of autophagy regulation is more effective, such as gene expression, transcription factors, or epigenetic modification that are responsible for the up-regulation of autophagy in cancer cells. Currently, the CRISPR-CAS9 technique is available and can be applied to demonstrate the potential effects of autophagy in cancerous cells.
    Keywords:  Autophagy; angiogenesis; metastasis; mitophagy; nucleophagy; pathogenesis; transformation; tumorigenesis
  15. Nutrients. 2022 Aug 31. pii: 3600. [Epub ahead of print]14(17):
      Abnormal vasorin (Vasn) expression occurs in multiple diseases, particularly liver cancers. Vasn knockout (KO) in mice causes malnutrition, a shortened life span, and decreased physiological functions. However, the causes and underlying mechanisms remain unknown. Here, we established Vasn KO C57BL/6J mice by using the CRISPR/Cas9 system. The animals were weighed, and histology, immunohistochemistry, electronic microscopy, and liver function tests were used to examine any change in the livers. Autophagy markers were detected by Western blotting. MicroRNA (miRNA) sequencing was performed on liver samples and analyses to study the signaling pathway altered by Vasn KO. Significant reductions in mice body and liver weight, accompanied by abnormal liver function, liver injury, and reduced glycogen accumulation in hepatocytes, were observed in the Vasn KO mice. The deficiency of Vasn also significantly increased the number of autophagosomes and the expression of LC3A/B-II/I but decreased SQSTM1/p62 levels in hepatocytes, suggesting aberrant activation of autophagy. Vasn deficiency inhibited glycogen-mediated mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR) phosphorylation and activated Unc-51-like kinase 1 (ULK1) signaling, suggesting that Vasn deletion upregulates hepatocyte autophagy through the mTOR-ULK1 signaling pathway as a possible cause of diminished life span and health. Our results indicate that Vasn is required for the homeostasis of liver glycogen metabolism upstream of hepatocyte autophagy, suggesting research values for regulating Vasn in pathways related to liver physiology and functions. Overall, this study provides new insight into the role of Vasn in liver functionality.
    Keywords:  ULK1; autophagy; glycogen; mTOR; vasorin (Vasn)
  16. Front Cell Infect Microbiol. 2022 ;12 834895
      Macroautophagy is a ubiquitous homeostasis and health-promoting recycling process of eukaryotic cells, targeting misfolded proteins, damaged organelles and intracellular infectious agents. Some intracellular pathogens such as Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium hijack this process during pathogenesis. Here we investigate potential protein-protein interactions between host transcription factors and secreted effector proteins of Salmonella and their effect on host gene transcription. A systems-level analysis identified Salmonella effector proteins that had the potential to affect core autophagy gene regulation. The effect of a SPI-1 effector protein, SopE, that was predicted to interact with regulatory proteins of the autophagy process, was investigated to validate our approach. We then confirmed experimentally that SopE can directly bind to SP1, a host transcription factor, which modulates the expression of the autophagy gene MAP1LC3B. We also revealed that SopE might have a double role in the modulation of autophagy: Following initial increase of MAP1LC3B transcription triggered by Salmonella infection, subsequent decrease in MAP1LC3B transcription at 6h post-infection was SopE-dependent. SopE also played a role in modulation of the autophagy flux machinery, in particular MAP1LC3B and p62 autophagy proteins, depending on the level of autophagy already taking place. Upon typical infection of epithelial cells, the autophagic flux is increased. However, when autophagy was chemically induced prior to infection, SopE dampened the autophagic flux. The same was also observed when most of the intracellular Salmonella cells were not associated with the SCV (strain lacking sifA) regardless of the autophagy induction status before infection. We demonstrated how regulatory network analysis can be used to better characterise the impact of pathogenic effector proteins, in this case, Salmonella. This study complements previous work in which we had demonstrated that specific pathogen effectors can affect the autophagy process through direct interaction with autophagy proteins. Here we show that effector proteins can also influence the upstream regulation of the process. Such interdisciplinary studies can increase our understanding of the infection process and point out targets important in intestinal epithelial cell defense.
    Keywords:  Host-microbe interactions; MAP1LC3B; Salmonella Typhimurium; SopE; autophagy; network biology
  17. Front Physiol. 2022 ;13 957968
      Glucose and lipid metabolism disorders caused by insulin resistance (IR) can lead to metabolic disorders such as diabetes, obesity, and the metabolic syndrome. Early and targeted intervention of IR is beneficial for the treatment of various metabolic disorders. Although significant progress has been made in the development of IR drug therapies, the state of the condition has not improved significantly. There is a critical need to identify novel therapeutic targets. Mitophagy is a type of selective autophagy quality control system that is activated to clear damaged and dysfunctional mitochondria. Mitophagy is highly regulated by various signaling pathways, such as the AMPK/mTOR pathway which is involved in the initiation of mitophagy, and the PINK1/Parkin, BNIP3/Nix, and FUNDC1 pathways, which are involved in mitophagosome formation. Mitophagy is involved in numerous human diseases such as neurological disorders, cardiovascular diseases, cancer, and aging. However, recently, there has been an increasing interest in the role of mitophagy in metabolic disorders. There is emerging evidence that normal mitophagy can improve IR. Unfortunately, few studies have investigated the relationship between mitophagy and IR. Therefore, we set out to review the role of mitophagy in IR and explore whether mitophagy may be a potential new target for IR therapy. We hope that this effort serves to stimulate further research in this area.
    Keywords:  autophagy; insulin resistance; mitochondrial dysfunction; mitophagy; therapeutic target
  18. Thromb Res. 2022 Aug 27. pii: S0049-3848(22)00360-7. [Epub ahead of print]
      Autophagy, the continuous recycling of intracellular building blocks, molecules, and organelles is necessary to preserve cellular function and homeostasis. In this context, it was demonstrated that autophagy plays an important role in megakaryopoiesis, the development and differentiation of hematopoietic progenitor cells into megakaryocytes. Furthermore, in recent years, autophagic proteins were detected in platelets, anucleate cells generated by megakaryocytes, responsible for hemostasis, thrombosis, and a key cell in inflammation and host immune responses. In the last decade studies have indicated the occurrence of autophagy in platelets. Moreover, autophagy in platelets was subsequently demonstrated to be involved in platelet aggregation, adhesion, and thrombus formation. Here, we review the current knowledge about autophagy in platelets, its function, and clinical implications. However, at the advent of platelet autophagy research, additional discoveries derived from evolving work will be required to precisely define the contributions of autophagy in platelets, and to expand the ever increasing physiologic and pathologic roles these remarkable and versatile blood cells play.
    Keywords:  Autophagic flux; Autophagosome; Autophagy; Megakaryocytes; Platelets; Thrombopoiesis
  19. Methods Mol Biol. 2022 ;2543 167-178
      Proximity ligation in situ assay (PLISA) is a powerful method to quantify endogen protein-protein interactions in cells and simultaneously identify localization of these interactions. PLISA can be used to quantify autophagy flux and can as well be adapted to assess global autophagy (SQSTM1/P62-LC3B interaction) or specific autophagy, such as mitophagy (NIX-LC3B). Here, we describe a step-by-step method to monitor autophagy using PLISA in adherent cancer cells.
    Keywords:  Amplification; Autophagy; Confocal microscopy; LC3B; Ligation; PLISA
  20. Biomed Pharmacother. 2022 Sep;pii: S0753-3322(22)00936-2. [Epub ahead of print]153 113547
      Autophagy is a well-conserved biological process that maintains homeostasis. Accumulating evidence has revealed that autophagy plays an important role in various cardiovascular diseases, such as aneurysm, aortic dissection, atherosclerosis, and myocardial ischemia-reperfusion injury. Here, we summarize the current experimental evidence on the function of autophagy and autophagy proteins in aortic aneurysm and dissection (AAD). AAD is a very serious aortic disease, and there are currently no effective drug treatment options. Studies have shown that autophagy is activated during AAD. However, the role of autophagy in AAD is still controversial. For example, knocking out autophagy related 5 (ATG5) or ATG7 to inhibit autophagy and excessive autophagy activation can promote the occurrence of AAD. Recently, multiple studies have demonstrated that rapamycin and metformin, which are autophagy activators, can delay the progression of AAD. Thus, targeting autophagy has the potential to become a new therapeutic strategy for AAD. In addition, we discuss the recent research progress on AAD from the perspective of single-cell RNA sequencing. Moreover, we offer our perspective on current challenges and barriers in this research field.
    Keywords:  Aortic aneurysm; Aortic dissection; Autophagy; Metformin; Rapamycin; Single-cell RNA sequencing
  21. Cancers (Basel). 2022 Sep 01. pii: 4289. [Epub ahead of print]14(17):
      While endocrine therapy remains the mainstay of treatment for ER-positive, HER2-negative breast cancer, tumor progression and disease recurrence limit the utility of current standards of care. While existing therapies may allow for a prolonged progression-free survival, however, the growth-arrested (essentially dormant) state of residual tumor cells is not permanent and is frequently a precursor to disease relapse. Tumor cells that escape dormancy and regain proliferative capacity also tend to acquire resistance to further therapies. The cellular process of autophagy has been implicated in the adaptation, survival, and reactivation of dormant cells. Autophagy is a cellular stress mechanism induced to maintain cellular homeostasis. Tumor cells often undergo therapy-induced autophagy which, in most contexts, is cytoprotective in function; however, depending on how the autophagy is regulated, it can also be non-protective, cytostatic, or cytotoxic. In this review, we explore the literature on the relationship(s) between endocrine therapies and autophagy. Moreover, we address the different functional roles of autophagy in response to these treatments, exploring the possibility of targeting autophagy as an adjuvant therapeutic modality together with endocrine therapies.
    Keywords:  autophagy; breast cancer; cytoprotective; endocrine; estrogen; resistance
  22. Neurotherapeutics. 2022 Sep 09.
      The discovery of mutations in LRRK2 and GBA1 that are linked to Parkinson's disease provided further evidence that autophagy and lysosome pathways are likely implicated in the pathogenic process. Their protein products are important regulators of lysosome function. LRRK2 has kinase-dependent effects on lysosome activity, autophagic efficacy and lysosomal Ca2+ signaling. Glucocerebrosidase (encoded by GBA1) is a hydrolytic enzyme contained in the lysosomes and contributes to the degradation of alpha-synuclein. PD-related mutations in LRRK2 and GBA1 slow the degradation of alpha-synuclein, thus directly implicating the dysfunction of the process in the neuropathology of Parkinson's disease. The development of genetic rodent models of LRRK2 and GBA1 provided hopes of obtaining reliable preclinical models in which to study pathogenic processes and perform drug validation studies. Here, I will review the extensive characterization of these models, their impact on understanding lysosome alterations in the course of Parkinson's disease and what novel insights have been obtained. In addition, I will discuss how these models fare with respect to the features of a "gold standard" animal models and what could be attempted in future studies to exploit LRRK2 and GBA1 rodent models in the fight against Parkinson's disease.
    Keywords:  Animal models; Glucocerebrosidase; LRRK2; Lysosomes; Neuropathology; Parkinson’s disease
  23. iScience. 2022 Sep 16. 25(9): 104941
      Numerous studies have established the involvement of lysosomal and mitochondrial dysfunction in the pathogenesis of neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer's and Parkinson diseases. Building on our previous studies of the neurodegenerative lysosomal lipidosis Niemann-Pick C1 (NPC1), we have unexpectedly discovered that activation of the mitochondrial chaperone tumor necrosis factor receptor-associated protein 1 (TRAP1) leads to the correction of the lysosomal storage phenotype in patient cells from multiple lysosomal storage disorders including NPC1. Using small compound activators specific for TRAP1, we find that activation of this chaperone leads to a generalized restoration of lysosomal and mitochondrial health. Mechanistically, we show that this process includes inhibition of oxidative phosphorylation and reduction of oxidative stress, which results in activation of AMPK and ultimately stimulates lysosome recycling. Thus, TRAP1 participates in lysosomal-mitochondrial crosstalk to maintain cellular homeostasis and could represent a potential therapeutic target for multiple disorders.
    Keywords:  Cell biology; Cellular neuroscience; Neuroscience
  24. Brain. 2022 Sep 08. pii: awac325. [Epub ahead of print]
      Parkinson's disease is a common incurable neurodegenerative disease. The identification of genetic variants via genome-wide association studies has considerably advanced our understanding of the Parkinson's disease genetic risk. Understanding the functional significance of the risk loci is now a critical step towards translating these genetic advances into an enhanced biological understanding of the disease. Impaired mitophagy is a key causative pathway in familial Parkinson's disease, but its relevance to idiopathic Parkinson's disease is unclear. We used a mitophagy screening assay to evaluate the functional significance of risk genes identified through genome-wide association studies. We identified two new regulators of PINK1-dependent mitophagy initiation, KAT8 and KANSL1, previously shown to modulate lysine acetylation. These findings suggest PINK1-mitophagy is a contributing factor to idiopathic Parkinson's disease. KANSL1 is located on chromosome 17q21 where the risk associated gene has long been considered to be MAPT. While our data does not exclude a possible association between the MAPT gene and Parkinson's disease, it provides strong evidence that KANSL1 plays a crucial role in the disease. Finally, these results enrich our understanding of physiological events regulating mitophagy and establish a novel pathway for drug targeting in neurodegeneration.
    Keywords:  GWAS; KANSL1; KAT8; Parkinson’s disease; mitophagy
  25. Methods Mol Biol. 2022 ;2543 155-166
      Autophagy and ER stress are most often studied employing a Western blotting approach to the measurement of autophagy by LC3B upregulation and the ER stress sensor signaling proteins PERK (protein kinase R-like endoplasmic reticulum kinase), IRE1, and ATF6 which initiate protein refolding and elongation of the ER until ER homeostasis is returned. If the misfolding of proteins is increased, then ER stress is maintained, and microautophagy of the ER or specifically reticulophagy occurs. However, LC3B, PERK, protein misfolding, and changes in ER mass (reticulophagy) can also be measured in a cell cycle-dependent manner by flow cytometry and the use of antibodies, protein misfolding, and ER tracking fluorescent probes.
    Keywords:  Autophagy; ER stress; Misfolded proteins; PERK; Reticulophagy
  26. Nat Commun. 2022 Sep 03. 13(1): 5204
      In addition to investigating the virology of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), discovering the host-virus dependencies are essential to identify and design effective antiviral therapy strategy. Here, we report that the SARS-CoV-2 entry receptor, ACE2, conjugates with small ubiquitin-like modifier 3 (SUMO3) and provide evidence indicating that prevention of ACE2 SUMOylation can block SARS-CoV-2 infection. E3 SUMO ligase PIAS4 prompts the SUMOylation and stabilization of ACE2, whereas deSUMOylation enzyme SENP3 reverses this process. Conjugation of SUMO3 with ACE2 at lysine (K) 187 hampers the K48-linked ubiquitination of ACE2, thus suppressing its subsequent cargo receptor TOLLIP-dependent autophagic degradation. TOLLIP deficiency results in the stabilization of ACE2 and elevated SARS-CoV-2 infection. In conclusion, our findings suggest selective autophagic degradation of ACE2 orchestrated by SUMOylation and ubiquitination as a potential way to combat SARS-CoV-2 infection.
  27. Cells. 2022 Aug 25. pii: 2645. [Epub ahead of print]11(17):
      Müller glial cells (MGCs) are a group of glial cells in the retina that provide essential support to retinal neurons; however, the understanding of MGC apoptosis and autophagy remains limited. This study was aimed at investigating the role of autophagy in MGCs under normal and oxidative conditions, and identifying the underlying mechanisms. In addition, the sirtuin 4 (SIRT4)-mediated signaling pathway was observed to regulate the autophagic process in MGCs. To assess the effect of autophagy on MGC mitochondrial function and survival, we treated rMC-1 cells-rat-derived Müller glial cells-with rapamycin and 3-methyladenine (3-MA), and found that MGC death was not induced by such treatment, while autophagic dysfunction could increase MGC apoptosis under oxidative stress, as reflected by the expression level of cleaved caspase 3 and PI staining. In addition, the downregulation of autophagy by 3-MA could influence the morphology of the mitochondrial network structure, the mitochondrial membrane potential, and generation of reactive oxygen species (ROS) under oxidative stress. Moreover, SIRT4 depletion enhanced autophagosome formation, as verified by an increase in the LC3 II/I ratio and a decrease in the expression of SQSTM1/p62, and vice versa. The inhibition of AMPK phosphorylation by compound C could reverse these changes in LC3 II/I and SQSTM1/p62 caused by SIRT4 knockdown. Our research concludes that MGCs can endure autophagic dysfunction in the absence of oxidative stress, while the downregulation of autophagy can cause MGCs to become more sensitized to oxidative stress. Simultaneous exposure to oxidative stress and autophagic dysfunction in MGCs can result in a pronounced impairment of cell survival. Mechanically, SIRT4 depletion can activate the autophagic process in MGCs by regulating the AMPK-mTOR signaling pathway.
    Keywords:  Müller glial cell; SIRT4; apoptosis; autophagy; mitochondrial function
  28. Cell Mol Life Sci. 2022 Sep 04. 79(9): 505
      In multiple cancers, autophagy promotes tumor development by recycling intracellular components into metabolic pathways. Autophagy-induced metabolic reprogramming and plasticity lead to cancer cell survival and resistance to anticancer therapy. We investigated the role of small leucine zipper protein (sLZIP) in autophagy and cell survival under nutrient-deficient conditions in colorectal cancer (CRC). sLZIP was induced by nutrient stress and increased the transcription of microtubule-associated protein 1A/1B-light chain 3 (LC3), by directly binding to its promoter. Under nutrient stress conditions, sLZIP activated autophagy and promoted the survival of CRC cells. sLZIP induced metabolic reprogramming of CRC cells, to activate glutaminolysis and the tricarboxylic acid cycle. sLZIP also enhanced the autophagic degradation of Keap1 and the nuclear accumulation of Nrf2, leading to NQO1 expression, for maintenance of redox homeostasis. sLZIP-knockout CRC cells exhibited impaired autophagy induction in the glycolytic inhibition state. Xenograft mice lacking sLZIP showed decreased tumor growth, by rendering CRC cells sensitive to glycolysis inhibition. The expression of sLZIP and LC3B was highly elevated in tumors of CRC patients compared to that in normal tissues, and correlated with the progression of CRC. These findings suggest that sLZIP drives autophagy and metabolic reprogramming to promote colorectal tumorigenesis.
    Keywords:  Autophagy; Colorectal cancer; Metabolic reprogramming; Transcriptional regulation
  29. Int J Mol Sci. 2022 Sep 02. pii: 10055. [Epub ahead of print]23(17):
      Metabolic associated fatty liver disease (MAFLD) is one of the most common causes of chronic liver disease worldwide. To date, there is no FDA-approved treatment, so there is an urgent need to determine its pathophysiology and underlying molecular mechanisms. Autophagy is a lysosomal degradation pathway that removes damaged organelles and misfolded proteins after cell injury through endoplasmic reticulum stress or starvation, which inhibits apoptosis and promotes cell survival. Recent studies have shown that autophagy plays an important role in removing lipid droplets from hepatocytes. Autophagy has also been reported to inhibit the production of pro-inflammatory cytokines and provide energy for the hepatic stellate cells activation during liver fibrosis. Thyroid hormone, irisin, melatonin, hydrogen sulfide, sulforaphane, DA-1241, vacuole membrane protein 1, nuclear factor erythroid 2-related factor 2, sodium-glucose co-transporter type-2 inhibitors, immunity-related GTPase M, and autophagy-related gene 7 have been reported to ameliorate MAFLD via autophagic induction. Lipid receptor CD36, SARS-CoV-2 Spike protein and leucine aminopeptidase 3 play a negative role in the autophagic function. This review summarizes recent advances in the role of autophagy in MAFLD. Autophagy modulates major pathological changes, including hepatic lipid metabolism, inflammation, and fibrosis, suggesting the potential of modulating autophagy for the treatment of MAFLD.
    Keywords:  MAFLD; NAFLD; autophagy; fatty liver disease; metabolic disease
  30. Oxid Med Cell Longev. 2022 ;2022 3504279
      Defective brain hormonal signaling and autophagy have been associated with neurodegeneration after brain insults, characterized by neuronal loss and cognitive dysfunction. However, few studies have linked them in the context of brain injury. Insulin-like growth factor-1 (IGF-1) is an important hormone that contributes to growth, cell proliferation, and autophagy and is also expressed in the brain. Here, we assessed the clinical data from TBI patients and performed both in vitro and in vivo experiments with proteomic and gene-chip analysis to assess the functions of IGF-1 in mitophagy following TBI. We show that reduced plasma IGF-1 is correlated with cognition in TBI patients. Overexpression of astrocytic IGF-1 improves cognitive dysfunction and mitophagy in TBI mice. Mechanically, proteomics data show that the IGF-1-related NF-κB pathway transcriptionally regulates decapping mRNA2 (Dcp2) and miR-let-7, together with IGF-1R to orchestrate mitophagy in TBI. Finally, we demonstrate that brain injury induces impaired mitophagy at the chronic stage and that IGF-1 treatment could facilitate the mitophagy markers via exosomal miR-let-7e. By showing that IGF-1 is an important mediator of the beneficial effect of the neural-endocrine network in TBI models, our findings place IGF-1/IGF-1R as a potential target capable of noncoding RNAs and opposing mitophagy failure and cognitive impairment in TBI.
  31. J Mol Cell Cardiol. 2022 Sep 06. pii: S0022-2828(22)00518-1. [Epub ahead of print]
      Cardiomyocytes undergo various forms of cell death during heart disease such as myocardial infarction and heart failure. Understanding the mechanisms of cell death in cardiomyocytes is one of the most fundamental issues in the treatment of heart failure. Among the several kinds of cell death mechanisms, this review will focus on autophagy-related cardiomyocyte cell death. Although autophagy plays an essential role in mediating cellular quality control mechanisms for cell survival, dysregulation of autophagy can cause cell death, referred to as autophagy-dependent cell death or type II programmed cell death. The recent discovery of autosis as a modality of autophagy-dependent cell death with unique morphological and biochemical features has allowed us to broaden our understanding of the mechanistic role of autophagy in cell death. Here, we discuss autophagy-dependent cardiomyocyte cell death, including autosis, in pathophysiological conditions of the heart.
    Keywords:  Autophagy-dependent cell death; Autosis; Cardiovascular disease; Therapeutic interventions
  32. Molecules. 2022 Aug 24. pii: 5414. [Epub ahead of print]27(17):
      Forkhead box O (FOXO) proteins are transcription factors involved in cancer and aging and their pharmacological manipulation could be beneficial for the treatment of cancer and healthy aging. FOXO proteins are mainly regulated by post-translational modifications including phosphorylation, acetylation and ubiquitination. As these modifications are reversible, activation and inactivation of FOXO factors is attainable through pharmacological treatment. One major regulatory input of FOXO signaling is mediated by protein kinases. Here, we use specific inhibitors against different kinases including PI3K, mTOR, MEK and ALK, and other receptor tyrosine kinases (RTKs) to determine their effect on FOXO3 activity. While we show that inhibition of PI3K efficiently drives FOXO3 into the cell nucleus, the dual PI3K/mTOR inhibitors dactolisib and PI-103 induce nuclear FOXO translocation more potently than the PI3Kδ inhibitor idelalisib. Furthermore, specific inhibition of mTOR kinase activity affecting both mTORC1 and mTORC2 potently induced nuclear translocation of FOXO3, while rapamycin, which specifically inhibits the mTORC1, failed to affect FOXO3. Interestingly, inhibition of the MAPK pathway had no effect on the localization of FOXO3 and upstream RTK inhibition only weakly induced nuclear FOXO3. We also measured the effect of the test compounds on the phosphorylation status of AKT, FOXO3 and ERK, on FOXO-dependent transcriptional activity and on the subcellular localization of other FOXO isoforms. We conclude that mTORC2 is the most important second layer kinase negatively regulating FOXO activity.
    Keywords:  FOXO; aging; cancer; chemical biology; high content screening; kinases; mTOR
  33. Brain Pathol. 2022 Sep 04. e13114
      Reactive astrogliosis and neuronal death are major features of brain tissue damage after transient global cerebral ischemia/reperfusion (I/R). The CA1 subfield in the hippocampus is particularly susceptible to cell death after I/R. Recently, attention has focused on the relationship between the autophagy-lysosomal pathway and cerebral ischemia. Lysosomal-associated membrane protein type-2A (LAMP-2A) is a key protein in chaperone-mediated autophagy (CMA). However, LAMP-2A expression in astrocytes of the hippocampus and its influence on brain injury following I/R remain unknown. Here, we show that LAMP-2A is elevated in astrocytes of the CA1 hippocampal subfield after I/R and in primary cultured astrocytes after transient oxygen-glucose deprivation (OGD). Conditional LAMP-2A knockdown in CA1 astrocytes inhibited astrocyte activation and prevented neuronal death by inhibiting the mitochondrial pathway of apoptosis after I/R, suggesting that elevated astrocytic LAMP-2A contributes to regional ischemic vulnerability. Furthermore, astrocytic LAMP-2A ablation ameliorated the spatial learning and memory deficits caused by I/R. Conditional astrocytic LAMP-2A knockdown also prevented the loss of hippocampal synapses and dendritic spines, improved the synaptic ultrastructure, and inhibited the reduced expression of synaptic proteins after ischemia. Thus, our findings demonstrate that astrocytic LAMP-2A expression increases upon I/R and that LAMP-2A ablation specifically in hippocampal astrocytes contributes to cerebroprotection, suggesting a novel neuroprotective strategy for patients with global ischemia.
    Keywords:  LAMP-2A; astrocyte; cognition; hippocampal CA1 subregion; neuronal apoptosis; transient global brain ischemia
  34. Cells. 2022 Aug 30. pii: 2704. [Epub ahead of print]11(17):
      Autophagy performs essential cell functions in the liver through an intracellular lysosomal degradation process. Several studies have reported that autophagy deficiency can lead to liver injury, including hepatic fibrosis; however, the mechanisms underlying the relationship between autophagy deficiency and liver pathology are unclear. In this study, we examined the expression levels of fibrosis-associated genes in hepatocyte-specific ATG7-deficient mice. The expression levels of the connective tissue growth factor (CTGF) and phosphorylated ERK (phospho-ERK) proteins were increased significantly in primary hepatocytes isolated from hepatocyte-specific ATG7-deficient mice compared to those isolated from control mice. In addition, the inhibition of autophagy in cultured mammalian hepatic AML12 and LX2 cells increased CTGF and phospho-ERK protein levels without altering CTGF mRNA expression. In addition, the autophagy deficiency-mediated enhancement of CTGF expression was attenuated when ERK was inhibited. Overall, these results suggest that the inhibition of autophagy in hepatocytes increases phospho-ERK expression, which in turn increases the expression of CTGF, a biomarker of fibrosis.
    Keywords:  ATG7; CTGF; ERK; autophagy; hepatocyte
  35. Int J Mol Sci. 2022 Aug 23. pii: 9550. [Epub ahead of print]23(17):
      Phosphatidylinositol 3-phosphate (PI(3)P) serves important functions in endocytosis, phagocytosis, and autophagy. PI(3)P is generated by Vps34 of the class III phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI3K) complex. The Vps34-PI3K complex can be divided into Vps34-PI3K class II (containing Vps38, endosomal) and Vps34-PI3K class I (containing Atg14, autophagosomal). Most PI(3)Ps are associated with endosomal membranes. In yeast, the endosomal localization of Vps34 and PI(3)P is tightly regulated by Vps21-module proteins. At yeast phagophore assembly site (PAS) or mammalian omegasomes, PI(3)P binds to WD-repeat protein interacting with phosphoinositide (WIPI) proteins to further recruit two conjugation systems, Atg5-Atg12·Atg16 and Atg8-PE (LC3-II), to initiate autophagy. However, the spatiotemporal regulation of PI(3)P during autophagy remains obscure. Therefore, in this study, we determined the effect of Vps21 on localization and interactions of Vps8, Vps34, Atg21, Atg8, and Atg16 upon autophagy induction. The results showed that Vps21 was required for successive colocalizations and interactions of Vps8-Vps34 and Vps34-Atg21 on endosomes, and Atg21-Atg8/Atg16 on the PAS. In addition to disrupted localization of the PI3K complex II subunits Vps34 and Vps38 on endosomes, the localization of the PI3K complex I subunits Vps34 and Atg14, as well as Atg21, was partly disrupted from the PAS in vps21∆ cells. The impaired PI3K-PI(3)P-Atg21-Atg16 axis in vps21∆ cells might delay autophagy, which is consistent with the delay of early autophagy when Atg21 was absent. This study provides the first insight into the upstream sequential regulation of the PI3K-PI(3)P-Atg21-Atg16 module by Vps21 in autophagy.
    Keywords:  Atg21; Vps21; Vps8; endosomes; phagophore assembly site; phosphatidylinositol 3-phosphate; the PI3K complex
  36. Front Plant Sci. 2022 ;13 961096
      FERONIA (FER) receptor kinase plays versatile roles in plant growth and development, biotic and abiotic stress responses, and reproduction. Autophagy is a conserved cellular recycling process that is critical for balancing plant growth and stress responses. Target of Rapamycin (TOR) has been shown to be a master regulator of autophagy. Our previous multi-omics analysis with loss-of-function fer-4 mutant implicated that FER functions in the autophagy pathway. We further demonstrated here that the fer-4 mutant displayed constitutive autophagy, and FER is required for TOR kinase activity measured by S6K1 phosphorylation and by root growth inhibition assay to TOR kinase inhibitor AZD8055. Taken together, our study provides a previously unknown mechanism by which FER functions through TOR to negatively regulate autophagy.
    Keywords:  AZD8055; Autophagy; FERONIA; S6K1 phosphorylation; TOR
  37. Dis Markers. 2022 ;2022 7240646
      LncRNAs are known to regulate a plethora of key events of cellular processes; however, little is known about the function of lncRNAs in autophagy. Here in the current study, we report lncRNA-IGFBP4 which has previously been known to regulate the proliferation and reprogramming of cancer cells, but its role in autophagy is not yet known. We found that serum starvation provokes autophagy-induced downregulation of lncRNA-IGFBP4 levels. Next, we determined that c-Myc can negatively regulate lncRNA-IGFBP4 in HeLa cells. Phenotypically, we found that upon depletion of lncRNA-IGFBP4, the HeLa cells undergo autophagy through ULK1/Beclin1 signaling. Furthermore, through TCGA data analysis, we found lncRNA-IGFB4 overexpressed in most cancers including cervical cancer. Based on these findings, we conclude that c-Myc maintains cellular homeostasis through negatively regulating lncRNA-IGFBP4 in cervical cancer cells.
  38. Plants (Basel). 2022 Aug 31. pii: 2280. [Epub ahead of print]11(17):
      Leaf senescence accompanied by yellowing and Rubisco degradation occurs prematurely in response to various stresses. However, signaling pathways between stress perception and senescence responses are not understood fully, although previous studies suggest the involvement of reactive oxygen species (ROS). While investigating the physiological functions of autophagy in Physcomitrium patens using wild-type (WT) and autophagy-deficient atg5 strains, we found that Physcomitrium colonies senesce prematurely under dark or nitrogen-deficient conditions, with atg5 senescing earlier than WT. In the present study, we measured cellular H2O2, and examined whether H2O2 mediates premature senescence in Physcomitrium colonies. Methyl viologen, an ROS generator, increased cellular H2O2 levels and caused senescence-like symptoms. H2O2 levels were also elevated to the same plateau levels in WT and atg5 under dark or nitrogen-deficient conditions. The ROS scavenger N-acetylcysteine and the ROS source inhibitor carbonyl cyanide m-chlorophenylhydrazone inhibited the increase in H2O2 levels as well as senescence. Upon transfer to a nitrogen-deficient medium, H2O2 levels increased earlier in atg5 than in WT by ~18 h, whereas atg5 yellowed earlier by >2 days. We conclude that the increased H2O2 levels under dark or nitrogen-deficient conditions mediate premature senescence in Physcomitrium but do not explain the different senescence responses of WT and atg5 cells.
    Keywords:  H2O2; Physcomitrium; dark; methyl viologen; nitrogen starvation; senescence
  39. Cell Death Dis. 2022 Sep 09. 13(9): 778
      The mechanistic (formally "mammalian") target of rapamycin (mTOR) pathway serves as a crucial regulator of various biological processes such as cell growth and cancer progression. In bladder cancer, recent discoveries showing the cancer-promoting role of mTOR complex 1 have attracted wide attention. However, the regulation of mTOR signaling in bladder cancer is complicated and the underlying mechanism remains elusive. Here, we report that the deubiquitinating enzyme, ovarian tumor domain-containing protein 5 (OTUD5), can activate the mTOR signaling pathway, promote cancer progression, and show its oncogenic potential in bladder cancer. In our study, we found that OTUD5 deubiquitinated a RING-type E3 ligase, RNF186, and stabilized its function. In addition, the stabilization of RNF186 further led to the degradation of sestrin2, which is an inhibitor of the mTOR signaling pathway. Together, we provide novel insights into the pathogenesis of bladder cancer and first prove that OTUD5 can promote bladder cancer progression through the OTUD5-RNF186-sestrin2-mTOR axis, which may be exploited in the future for the diagnosis and treatment of this malignancy.
  40. J Cell Biol. 2022 Oct 03. pii: e202205104. [Epub ahead of print]221(10):
      Mitochondria are dynamic organelles that play essential roles in cell growth and survival. Processes of fission and fusion are critical for the distribution, segregation, and maintenance of mitochondria and their genomes (mtDNA). While recent work has revealed the significance of mitochondrial organization for mtDNA maintenance, the impact of mtDNA perturbations on mitochondrial dynamics remains less understood. Here, we develop a tool to induce mitochondria-specific DNA damage using a mitochondrial-targeted base modifying bacterial toxin, DarT. Following damage, we observe dynamic reorganization of mitochondrial networks, likely driven by mitochondrial dysfunction. Changes in the organization are associated with the loss of mtDNA, independent of mitophagy. Unexpectedly, perturbation to exonuclease function of mtDNA replicative polymerase, Mip1, results in rapid loss of mtDNA. Our data suggest that, under damage, partitioning of defective mtDNA and organelle are de-coupled, with emphasis on mitochondrial segregation independent of its DNA. Together, our work underscores the importance of genome maintenance on mitochondrial function, which can act as a modulator of organelle organization and segregation.
  41. Molecules. 2022 Aug 29. pii: 5545. [Epub ahead of print]27(17):
      Resveratrol is a natural polyphenol found in various plants. It has been widely studied on cardiovascular disorders. It is known that resveratrol can activate Sirtuin proteins and participate in cellular energy metabolism through a Sirtuin-dependent pathway. Here, we hypothesized that resveratrol may protect against myocardial ischemia/reperfusion injury (MIRI) through the target of Sirt1/Sirt3 on mitochondrial dynamics, cardiac autophagy, bioenergetics and oxidative damage in hypoxia/reoxygenation (H/R)-induced neonatal rat cardiomyocytes. We observed that resveratrol could activate the Sirt1/Sirt3-FoxO pathway on myocardial mitochondria in H/R cardiomyocytes. Subsequently, we found that resveratrol repaired the fission-fusion balance, autophagic flux and mitochondrial biosynthesis compared by H/R group. These changes were followed by increased functional mitochondrial number, mitochondrial bioenergetics and a better mitochondrial antioxidant enzyme system. Meanwhile, these effects were antagonized by co-treatment with Selisistat (Ex527), a Sirtuin inhibitor. Together, our findings uncover the potential contribution of resveratrol in reestablishing a mitochondrial quality control network with Parkin, Mfn2 and PGC-1α as the key nodes.
    Keywords:  MIRI; autophagy; mitochondrial quality control; resveratrol
  42. Bull Exp Biol Med. 2022 Sep 05.
      Immunohistochemical and ultrastructural analysis revealed signs of structural alterations in neurons and autophagy in all layers of the human retina at the end-stage glaucoma. The most pronounced destructive changes associated with swelling and destruction of mitochondria, endoplasmic reticulum, and Golgi apparatus, as well as structural signs of impaired synaptic activity and apoptosis were noted in ganglion, bipolar, and amacrine neurons. In the structure of photoreceptor cells, alone with destructive processes associated with structural alterations of rods and cones in the outer membrane discs, as well as swelling of organelles, we observed processes aimed at the maintenance of cell homeostasis. Structural signs of autophagy (mainly mitophagy) and changes of the ultrastructural organization in rod neurons were more pronounced than in cones.
    Keywords:  autophagy; glaucoma; neurons; retina; ultrastructure
  43. Materials (Basel). 2022 Sep 01. pii: 6041. [Epub ahead of print]15(17):
      Dental endo-osseous implants have become a widely used treatment for replacing missing teeth. Dental implants are placed into a surgically created osteotomy in alveolar bone, the healing of the soft tissue lesion and the osseointegration of the implant being key elements to long-term success. Autophagy is considered the major intracellular degradation system, playing important roles in various cellular processes involved in dental implant integration. The aim of this review is an exploration of autophagy roles in the main cell types involved in the healing and remodeling of soft tissue lesions and implant osseointegration, post-implant surgery. We have focused on the autophagy pathway in macrophages, endothelial cells; osteoclasts, osteoblasts; fibroblasts, myofibroblasts and keratinocytes. In macrophages, autophagy modulates innate and adaptive immune responses playing a key role in osteo-immunity. Autophagy induction in endothelial cells promotes apoptosis resistance, cell survival, and protection against oxidative stress damage. The autophagic machinery is also involved in transporting stromal vesicles containing mineralization-related factors to the extracellular matrix and regulating osteoblasts' functions. Alveolar bone remodeling is achieved by immune cells differentiation into osteoclasts; autophagy plays an important and active role in this process. Autophagy downregulation in fibroblasts induces apoptosis, leading to better wound healing by improving excessive deposition of extracellular matrix and inhibiting fibrosis progression. Autophagy seems to be a dual actor on the scene of dental implant surgery, imposing further research in order to completely reveal its positive features which may be essential for clinical efficacy.
    Keywords:  autophagy; dental implant; osseointegration; osteoimmunity; wound healing
  44. Cancer Sci. 2022 Sep 07.
      For its various important functions in cells, PTEN-induced putative kinase 1 (PINK1) has drawn considerable attention for the role it plays in early-onset Parkinson's disease. Last several years, emerging evidence supports the hypothesis that PINK1 taking part in regulating many cells physiological and pathophysiological processes in cancer cell, including cytoplasmic homeostasis, cell survival and cell death. According to the findings of these studies, PINK1 can function as a tumor promoter or suppressor, showing a duality that is dependent on the context. We review herein the mechanistic characters relating to PINK1 based on available published data from peer-reviewed articles, The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA) data mining and cell-based assays. In this minireview, the author focuses on some of the interplays between PINK1 and the context and recent developments in the field, including its growing involvement in mitophagy and its non-mitophagy organelles related function. This minireview aims to help readers better grasp how PINK1 is functioning in the cell physiological and pathophysiological processes, especially in cancer biology.
    Keywords:  PINK1; antitumor; cancer; mitophagy; oncogene
  45. Front Bioeng Biotechnol. 2022 ;10 978283
      Bone and tissue degeneration are the most common skeletal disorders that seriously affect people's quality of life. N6-methyladenosine (m6A) is one of the most common RNA modifications in eukaryotic cells, affecting the alternative splicing, translation, stability and degradation of mRNA. Interestingly, increasing number of evidences have indicated that m6A modification could modulate the expression of autophagy-related (ATG) genes and promote autophagy in the cells. Autophagy is an important process regulating intracellular turnover and is evolutionarily conserved in eukaryotes. Abnormal autophagy results in a variety of diseases, including cardiomyopathy, degenerative disorders, and inflammation. Thus, the interaction between m6A modification and autophagy plays a prominent role in the onset and progression of bone and tissue degeneration. In this review, we summarize the current knowledge related to the effect of m6A modification on autophagy, and introduce the role of the crosstalk between m6A modification and autophagy in bone and tissue degeneration. An in-depth knowledge of the above crosstalk may help to improve our understanding of their effects on bone and tissue degeneration and provide novel insights for the future therapeutics.
    Keywords:  M6A; autophagy; degenerative; disease; mRNA; osteoporosis
  46. Cells. 2022 Sep 02. pii: 2744. [Epub ahead of print]11(17):
      Mitochondrial dynamics continually maintain cell survival and bioenergetics through mitochondrial quality control processes (fission, fusion, and mitophagy). Aberrant mitochondrial quality control has been implicated in the pathogenic mechanism of various human diseases, including cancer, cardiac dysfunction, and neurological disorders, such as Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, and prion disease. However, the mitochondrial dysfunction-mediated neuropathological mechanisms in prion disease are still uncertain. Here, we used both in vitro and in vivo scrapie-infected models to investigate the involvement of mitochondrial quality control in prion pathogenesis. We found that scrapie infection led to the induction of mitochondrial reactive oxygen species (mtROS) and the loss of mitochondrial membrane potential (ΔΨm), resulting in enhanced phosphorylation of dynamin-related protein 1 (Drp1) at Ser616 and its subsequent translocation to the mitochondria, which was followed by excessive mitophagy. We also confirmed decreased expression levels of mitochondrial oxidative phosphorylation (OXPHOS) complexes and reduced ATP production by scrapie infection. In addition, scrapie-infection-induced aberrant mitochondrial fission and mitophagy led to increased apoptotic signaling, as evidenced by caspase 3 activation and poly (ADP-ribose) polymerase cleavage. These results suggest that scrapie infection induced mitochondrial dysfunction via impaired mitochondrial quality control processes followed by neuronal cell death, which may have an important role in the neuropathogenesis of prion diseases.
    Keywords:  dynamin-related protein 1; mitochondrial fission; mitochondrial quality control; mitophagy; neurodegeneration; prion disease
  47. Tissue Cell. 2022 Aug 31. pii: S0040-8166(22)00182-3. [Epub ahead of print]79 101910
      Myoblast differentiation and fusion are vital for muscle development and repair in mammals. We previously showed that necrostatin-1(Nec-1) protects C2C12 myotubes from cobalt chloride (CoCl2)-induced pseudo-hypoxia. However, the function of Nec-1 in mouse C2C12 myoblast differentiation and fusion was still unknown. In this study, we found that CoCl2 substantially impaired C2C12 myoblast differentiation and fusion, and reduced the expression of Myh1, Myh2, Myh4, Myh7, myomaker, and myomerger. Nec-1 treatment rescued C2C12 myoblast differentiation and fusion and promoted the expression of myomaker and myomerger. Mechanistically, Nec-1 promoted C2C12 myoblast differentiation and fusion by inhibiting mTOR-mediated autophagy. Rapamycin abolished the increases in expression of muscle fusion-related genes, indicating that the upregulation of differentiation and fusion is mTOR-dependent. These results suggest that Nec-1 inhibited autophagy in an mTOR-dependent mechanism that is crucial for mTOR-induced C2C12 myoblast differentiation and fusion.
    Keywords:  CoCl(2); Fusion; Myoblast; Necrostatin-1; mTOR pathway
  48. Hum Mol Genet. 2022 Sep 06. pii: ddac218. [Epub ahead of print]
      DNA damage response (DDR) is an important signaling-transduction network that promotes the repair of DNA lesions which can induce and/or support diseases. However, the mechanisms involved in its regulation are not fully understood. Recent, studies suggest that the peroxiredoxin 5 (Prdx5) enzyme, which detoxifies reactive oxygen species is associated to genomic instability and signal transduction. Its role in the regulation of DDR, however, is not well characterized. In this study, we demonstrate a role of Prdx5 in the regulation of the DDR signaling pathway. Knockdown of Prdx5 resulted in DNA damage manifested by the induction of phosphorylated histone H2AX (γ-H2AX) and p53-binding protein 1 (53BP1). We show that Prdx5 regulates DDR through: 1) polo-like kinase 1 (Plk1) mediated phosphorylation of ataxia telangiectasia mutated (ATM) kinase to further trigger downstream mediators Chek1 and Chek2; 2) the increase of the acetylation of p53 at lysine 382, stabilizing p53 in the nucleus and enhancing transcription; 3) the induction of autophagy, which regulates the recycling of molecules involved in DDR. We identified Sirt2 as a novel deacetylase of p53 at lysine 382, and Sirt2 regulated the acetylation status of p53 at lysine 382 in a Prdx5-dependent manner. Furthermore, we found that exogenous expression of Prdx5 decreased DNA damage and the activation of ATM in Pkd1 mutant renal epithelial cells, suggesting that Prdx5 may play a protective role from DNA damage in cystic renal epithelial cells. This study identified a novel mechanism of Prdx5 in the regulation of DDR through the ATM/p53/Sirt2 signaling cascade.
  49. Int J Mol Sci. 2022 Aug 30. pii: 9846. [Epub ahead of print]23(17):
      Osteoclastogenesis is an ongoing rigorous course that includes osteoclast precursors fusion and bone resorption executed by degradative enzymes. Osteoclastogenesis is controlled by endogenous signaling and/or regulators or affected by exogenous conditions and can also be controlled both internally and externally. More evidence indicates that autophagy, inflammation, and immunity are closely related to osteoclastogenesis and involve multiple intracellular organelles (e.g., lysosomes and autophagosomes) and certain inflammatory or immunological factors. Based on the literature on osteoclastogenesis induced by different regulatory aspects, emerging basic cross-studies have reported the emerging disquisitive orientation for osteoclast differentiation and function. In this review, we summarize the partial potential therapeutic targets for osteoclast differentiation and function, including the signaling pathways and various cellular processes.
    Keywords:  autophagy; immunity; inflammation; osteoclastogenesis
  50. Mini Rev Med Chem. 2022 Sep 05.
      Multidrug resistance (MDR) in tumor cells, a phenomenon in which tumor cells become resistant to chemotherapeutic drugs with different chemical structures and mechanisms of action, is a major obstacle to tumor therapy and is an urgent problem to be addressed. Autophagy, widely found in eukaryotic cells, is a lysosome-dependent pathway of self-degradation. In different environments, autophagy can play different roles in the self-protection of cells. At different stages of tumorigenesis, autophagy can play two distinct roles: inhibition of cancer and promotion of cancer. The relationship between autophagy and drug resistance in tumor cells is complex. Moreover, autophagy can play a role in promoting drug resistance and drug sensitivity through different molecular pathways. This study aimed to investigate the relationship between autophagy and drug resistance in tumor cells from the perspective of molecular mechanisms.
    Keywords:  Autophagy; Chemotherapy; MDR; Self-protection; Tumorigenesis; drug sensitivity