Chaperone-mediated autophagy: A unique way to enter the lysosome world

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All cellular proteins undergo continuous synthesis and degradation. This permanent renewal is necessary to maintain a functional proteome and to allow rapid changes in levels of specific proteins with regulatory purposes. Although for a long time lysosomes were considered unable to contribute to the selective degradation of individual proteins, the discovery of chaperone-mediated autophagy (CMA) changed this notion. Here, we review the characteristics that set CMA apart from other types of lysosomal degradation and the subset of molecules that confer cells the capability to identify individual cytosolic proteins and direct them across the lysosomal membrane for degradation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)407-417
Number of pages11
JournalTrends in Cell Biology
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 2012


  • Aging
  • Cancer
  • Chaperones
  • Lysosomes
  • Membrane proteins
  • Neurodegeneration
  • Protein degradation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cell Biology


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