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Autophagy. 2015 Nov 2;11(11):2123-2124.

Open and closed HORMAs regulate autophagy initiation.

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a Institute of Microbial Chemistry (BIKAKEN) ; Tokyo , Japan.
b Graduate School of Medicine; The University of Tokyo ; Tokyo , Japan.
c Core Research for Evolutionary Science and Technology; Japan Science and Technology Agency ; Tokyo , Japan.


The Atg1/ULK complex functions as the most upstream factor among Atg proteins to initiate autophagy. ATG101 is a constitutive component of the Atg1/ULK complex in most eukaryotes except for budding yeast, and plays an essential role in autophagy; however, the structure and functions of ATG101 were largely unknown. Recently, we determined the crystal structure of fission yeast Atg101 in complex with the closed HORMA domain of Atg13, revealing that Atg101 is also a HORMA protein with an open conformation. These 2 HORMA proteins play essential roles in autophagy initiation through recruiting downstream factors to the autophagosome formation site.


Atg101; Atg13; HORMA; ULK complex; autophagy initiation; crystal structure

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