The Cargo Receptor NDP52 Initiates Selective Autophagy by Recruiting the ULK Complex to Cytosol-Invading Bacteria

Mol Cell. 2019 Apr 18;74(2):320-329.e6. doi: 10.1016/j.molcel.2019.01.041. Epub 2019 Mar 7.


Xenophagy, a selective autophagy pathway that protects the cytosol against bacterial invasion, relies on cargo receptors that juxtapose bacteria and phagophore membranes. Whether phagophores are recruited from a constitutive pool or are generated de novo at prospective cargo remains unknown. Phagophore formation in situ would require recruitment of the upstream autophagy machinery to prospective cargo. Here, we show that, essential for anti-bacterial autophagy, the cargo receptor NDP52 forms a trimeric complex with FIP200 and SINTBAD/NAP1, which are subunits of the autophagy-initiating ULK and the TBK1 kinase complex, respectively. FIP200 and SINTBAD/NAP1 are each recruited independently to bacteria via NDP52, as revealed by selective point mutations in their respective binding sites, but only in their combined presence does xenophagy proceed. Such recruitment of the upstream autophagy machinery by NDP52 reveals how detection of cargo-associated "eat me" signals, induction of autophagy, and juxtaposition of cargo and phagophores are integrated in higher eukaryotes.

Keywords: FIP200; NDP52; Salmonella enterica; TBK1; ULK; cargo receptor; galectin-8; selective autophagy; xenophagy.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adaptor Proteins, Signal Transducing / chemistry
  • Adaptor Proteins, Signal Transducing / genetics*
  • Autophagy / genetics*
  • Autophagy-Related Protein-1 Homolog / genetics
  • Autophagy-Related Proteins
  • Binding Sites / genetics
  • Cytoplasm / microbiology
  • Cytosol / microbiology
  • Humans
  • Multiprotein Complexes / chemistry
  • Multiprotein Complexes / genetics
  • Nuclear Proteins / chemistry
  • Nuclear Proteins / genetics*
  • Point Mutation / genetics
  • Protein Binding / genetics
  • Protein Serine-Threonine Kinases / genetics
  • Protein-Tyrosine Kinases / chemistry
  • Protein-Tyrosine Kinases / genetics*
  • Salmonella typhimurium / genetics
  • Salmonella typhimurium / pathogenicity


  • Adaptor Proteins, Signal Transducing
  • Autophagy-Related Proteins
  • CALCOCO2 protein, human
  • Multiprotein Complexes
  • Nuclear Proteins
  • RB1CC1 protein, human
  • TBKBP1 protein, human
  • Protein-Tyrosine Kinases
  • Autophagy-Related Protein-1 Homolog
  • Protein Serine-Threonine Kinases
  • TBK1 protein, human