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Free Radic Biol Med. 2012 Nov 1;53(9):1760-9. doi: 10.1016/j.freeradbiomed.2012.08.591. Epub 2012 Sep 1.

Lipofuscin is formed independently of macroautophagy and lysosomal activity in stress-induced prematurely senescent human fibroblasts.

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Department of Nutritional Toxicology, Institute of Nutrition, Friedrich Schiller University Jena, Germany.


In the current literature, the lysosomal system is considered to be involved in the intracellular formation and accumulation of lipofuscin, a highly oxidized and covalently cross-linked aggregate of proteins that fills the lysosomal volume during aging. In contrast, our experimental results presented here suggest that both the autophagosomes and the lysosomal system are not mandatory for the formation of lipofuscin, since that material accumulates in the cytosolic volume if autophagy or lysosomal activity is inhibited. However, such an inhibition is accompanied by an enhanced toxicity of the formed protein aggregates. Furthermore, it could be proven that macroautophagy is responsible for the uptake of lipofuscin into the lysosomes.

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