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PLoS Biol. 2014 Oct 14;12(10):e1001967. doi: 10.1371/journal.pbio.1001967. eCollection 2014 Oct.

Autophagy and its effects: making sense of double-edged swords.

Author information

1
Department of Pharmacology, University of Colorado School of Medicine, Aurora, Colorado, United States of America.

Abstract

Autophagy is the mechanism by which cellular material is delivered to lysosomes and degraded. This process has become a major focus of biological and biomedical research with thousands of papers published each year and rapidly growing appreciation that autophagy affects many normal and pathological processes. However, as we learn more about this evolutionarily ancient process, we are discovering that autophagy's effects may work for both the good and the bad of an organism. Here, I discuss some of these context-dependent findings and how, as we make sense of them, we can try to apply our knowledge for practical purposes.

PMID:
25313680
PMCID:
PMC4196727
DOI:
10.1371/journal.pbio.1001967
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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