The AMPK-SKP2-CARM1 axis links nutrient sensing to transcriptional and epigenetic regulation of autophagy

Ziheng Xu, Daniel J. Klionsky

Abstract

Macroautophagy/autophagy is a highly conserved catabolic process that targets bulk cytoplasm, and damaged organelles or other harmful intracellular content to the lysosome/vacuole for degradation. Autophagy is essential for maintaining proper cellular homeostasis and for survival under adverse conditions. When this cytoprotective process becomes dysfunctional, it is often associated with a spectrum of human ailments including cancer and neurodegenerative diseases. Intensive studies have been carried out in the past two decades to understand the mechanism and regulation of autophagy; so far, more than thirty autophagy-related (ATG) genes have been identified in human that orchestrate the complex membrane dynamics involved in autophagic sequestration. In order to further our understanding of this crucial cellular activity, and to gain the knowledge necessary to modulate autophagy for therapeutic purposes, it is imperative that we continue to explore the mechanisms involved in its regulation.