Selective degradation of mitochondria is a fundamental process that depends on formation of autophagy-related double-membrane vesicles exclusive to mitochondria, and is thus termed mitophagy. In yeast, mitophagy is induced by a shift from respiration to starvation, or prolonged respiratory growth. Here we show that mitochondrial degradation in yeast also occurs selectively under starvation conditions even without respiration. Induction of mitophagy takes place much later than that of bulk autophagy, requiring Atg11 and Atg32 essential for mitophagy as well as Atg17, Atg29, and Atg31 specific for bulk autophagy. We propose that these two discrete protein complexes cooperatively activate starvation-induced mitophagy.
Copyright © 2013 Federation of European Biochemical Societies. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.