Send to

Choose Destination
J Biol Chem. 2006 Feb 17;281(7):4035-41. Epub 2005 Dec 6.

Excess peroxisomes are degraded by autophagic machinery in mammals.

Author information

Department of Biochemistry, Juntendo University School of Medicine, Bunkyo-ku, Tokyo, Japan.


Peroxisomes are degraded by autophagic machinery termed "pexophagy" in yeast; however, whether this is essential for peroxisome degradation in mammals remains unknown. Here we have shown that Atg7, an essential gene for autophagy, plays a pivotal role in the degradation of excess peroxisomes in mammals. Following induction of peroxisomes by a 2-week treatment with phthalate esters in control and Atg7-deficient livers, peroxisomal degradation was monitored within 1 week after discontinuation of phthalate esters. Although most of the excess peroxisomes in the control liver were selectively degraded within 1 week, this rapid removal was exclusively impaired in the mutant liver. Furthermore, morphological analysis revealed that surplus peroxisomes, but not mutant hepatocytes, were surrounded by autophagosomes in the control. Our results indicated that the autophagic machinery is essential for the selective clearance of excess peroxisomes in mammals. This is the first direct evidence for the contribution of autophagic machinery in peroxisomal degradation in mammals.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free full text

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for HighWire
Loading ...
Support Center