Autophagy: paying Charon's toll

Cell. 2007 Mar 9;128(5):833-6. doi: 10.1016/j.cell.2007.02.023.


Autophagy (literally self-eating) has diverse cytoprotective functions but also is linked to programmed cell death (PCD). In this issue, Qu et al. (2007) analyze the role of autophagy in PCD during development. Unexpectedly they find that autophagy induces apoptotic cells to present a signal to ensure their clearance, which is crucial for mouse embryonic morphogenesis.

Publication types

  • Review
  • Comment

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Apoptosis / physiology*
  • Autophagy / physiology*
  • Autophagy-Related Protein 5
  • Cell Line
  • Embryonic Development*
  • Humans
  • Mice
  • Microtubule-Associated Proteins / physiology
  • Morphogenesis
  • Signal Transduction


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