Organelle degradation during the lens and erythroid differentiation is independent of autophagy

Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2006 Jan 13;339(2):485-9. doi: 10.1016/j.bbrc.2005.11.044. Epub 2005 Nov 15.


Autophagy is a bulk degradation system within cells through which cytoplasmic components are degraded within lysosomes. Primary roles of autophagy are starvation adaptation and intracellular protein quality control. In contrast to the ubiquitin-proteasome system, autophagy can also degrade organelles. Here we examined a possible role of autophagy in organelle degradation during lens and erythroid differentiation. We observed that autophagy occurs in embryonic lens cells. However, organelle degradation in lens and erythroid cells occurred normally in autophagy-deficient Atg5(-/-) mice. Our data suggest that degradation system(s) other than autophagy play major roles in organelle degradation during these processes.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Autophagy*
  • Autophagy-Related Protein 5
  • Cell Differentiation*
  • Erythroid Cells / cytology*
  • Erythroid Cells / metabolism
  • Lens, Crystalline / cytology*
  • Lens, Crystalline / embryology
  • Lens, Crystalline / metabolism
  • Mice
  • Mice, Knockout
  • Microscopy, Electron
  • Microtubule-Associated Proteins / deficiency
  • Microtubule-Associated Proteins / genetics
  • Microtubule-Associated Proteins / metabolism
  • Organelles / metabolism*


  • Atg5 protein, mouse
  • Autophagy-Related Protein 5
  • Microtubule-Associated Proteins