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Cell. 2008 Jan 11;132(1):27-42. doi: 10.1016/j.cell.2007.12.018.

Autophagy in the pathogenesis of disease.

Author information

  • 1Department of Internal Medicine, University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, 5323 Harry Hines Boulevard, Dallas, TX 75390, USA. beth.levine@utsouthwestern.edu

Abstract

Autophagy is a lysosomal degradation pathway that is essential for survival, differentiation, development, and homeostasis. Autophagy principally serves an adaptive role to protect organisms against diverse pathologies, including infections, cancer, neurodegeneration, aging, and heart disease. However, in certain experimental disease settings, the self-cannibalistic or, paradoxically, even the prosurvival functions of autophagy may be deleterious. This Review summarizes recent advances in understanding the physiological functions of autophagy and its possible roles in the causation and prevention of human diseases.

PMID:
18191218
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PMCID:
PMC2696814
Free PMC Article

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