Evolution of Atg1 function and regulation

Edmond Y. Chan, Sharon A. Tooze

Research output: Contribution to journalLiterature review

87 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The serine/threonine kinase Atg1 plays an essential role downstream of TOR for the regulation of autophagy. In yeast, where Atg1 was first identified, a complex regulatory mechanism has been described that includes at least seven other interacting proteins and a phosphorylation-dependent switch. Recent findings confirm that the mammalian Atg1 homologues ULK1 and 2 have autophagy regulatory roles. However, we and others have also demonstrated mechanistic differences with the yeast model and between these two Atg1 family members. Here, we elaborate on our growing understanding of Atg1 function, incorporating findings from yeast, C. elegans, D. melanogaster and mammalian cells. We propose that through evolution, Atg1 proteins have adopted additional cellular functions and regulatory mechanisms, which could involve multiple gene family isoforms working within multifunctional protein complexes. The gene family expansion observed in higher eukaryotes might reflect an increased functional diversity of Atg1 proteins in cell growth, differentiation and survival.
LanguageEnglish
Pages758-765
Number of pages8
JournalAutophagy
Volume5
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 16 Aug 2009

Fingerprint

Yeasts
Autophagy
Proteins
Protein-Serine-Threonine Kinases
Eukaryota
Genes
Cell Differentiation
Cell Survival
Protein Isoforms
Phosphorylation
Growth

Keywords

  • ulk
  • unc-51
  • unc-51-like kinase
  • fused
  • stk36
  • autophagy

Cite this

Chan, E. Y., & Tooze, S. A. (2009). Evolution of Atg1 function and regulation. Autophagy, 5(6), 758-765.
Chan, Edmond Y. ; Tooze, Sharon A. / Evolution of Atg1 function and regulation. In: Autophagy. 2009 ; Vol. 5, No. 6. pp. 758-765.
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Chan, EY & Tooze, SA 2009, 'Evolution of Atg1 function and regulation' Autophagy, vol. 5, no. 6, pp. 758-765.

Evolution of Atg1 function and regulation. / Chan, Edmond Y.; Tooze, Sharon A.

In: Autophagy, Vol. 5, No. 6, 16.08.2009, p. 758-765.

Research output: Contribution to journalLiterature review

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AB - The serine/threonine kinase Atg1 plays an essential role downstream of TOR for the regulation of autophagy. In yeast, where Atg1 was first identified, a complex regulatory mechanism has been described that includes at least seven other interacting proteins and a phosphorylation-dependent switch. Recent findings confirm that the mammalian Atg1 homologues ULK1 and 2 have autophagy regulatory roles. However, we and others have also demonstrated mechanistic differences with the yeast model and between these two Atg1 family members. Here, we elaborate on our growing understanding of Atg1 function, incorporating findings from yeast, C. elegans, D. melanogaster and mammalian cells. We propose that through evolution, Atg1 proteins have adopted additional cellular functions and regulatory mechanisms, which could involve multiple gene family isoforms working within multifunctional protein complexes. The gene family expansion observed in higher eukaryotes might reflect an increased functional diversity of Atg1 proteins in cell growth, differentiation and survival.

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Chan EY, Tooze SA. Evolution of Atg1 function and regulation. Autophagy. 2009 Aug 16;5(6):758-765.