Selective autophagy

Targeting of cytosolic proteins for lysosomal degradation via the autophagic pathway in the mammalian system was long considered to be a nonselective process. This view changed with the identification of the ubiquitin-binding proteins that specifically interact with mammalian Atg8s. We have studied the crucial role Atg8s play a in selective cargo recruitment into autophagosomes, a process mediated by their interaction with p62 and NBR1, two scaffold proteins that interact with ubiquitinated protein aggregates. We are currently studying the mechanism by which specific cargo molecules are recruited into autophagosomes under different physiological conditions.