Two key questions in the autophagy field are the mechanisms that underlie the signals for autophagy initiation and the source of membrane for expansion of the nascent membrane, the phagophore. In this review, we discuss recent findings highlighting the role of the classical endosomal pathway, from plasma membrane to lysosome, in the formation and expansion of the phagophore and subsequent degradation of the autophagosome contents. We also highlight the striking conservation of regulatory factors between the two pathways, including those regulating membrane budding and fusion, and the role of the lysosome in sensing the nutrient status of the cell, regulating mTORC1 activity, and ultimately the initiation of autophagy. Editor's suggested further reading in BioEssays The evolution of dynamin to regulate clathrin-mediated endocytosis Abstract.
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