WIPI proteins, phosphatidylinositol 3-phosphate (PtdIns3P) binding proteins with β-propeller folds, are recruited to the omegasome following PtdIns3P production. The functions of the WIPI proteins in autophagosome formation are poorly understood. In a recent study, we reported that WIPI2B directly binds ATG16L1 and functions by recruiting the ATG12-ATG5-ATG16L1 complex to forming autophagosomes during starvation- or pathogen-induced autophagy. Our model of WIPI2 function provides an explanation for the PtdIns3P-dependent recruitment of the ATG12-ATG5-ATG16L1 complex during initiation of autophagy.
Keywords: ATG12–ATG5-ATG16L1; PtdIns3P; PtdIns3P, phosphatidylinositol 3-phosphate; WIPI; autophagosome; autophagy; omegasome.