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An overview of the perspective of cellular autophagy: Mechanism, regulation, and the role of autophagy dysregulation in the pathogenesis of diseases


1 Department of Clinical Biochemistry, Faculty of Medicine, King Abdulaziz University, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia
2 Department of Clinical Biochemistry, Faculty of Medicine, King Abdulaziz University, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia; Medical Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Faculty of Medicine, Mansoura University, Mansoura, Egypt

Correspondence Address:
Ayman Z Elsamanoudy,
Department of Clinical Biochemistry, Faculty of Medicine, King Abdulaziz University, Jeddah 21465

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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/JMAU.JMAU_33_20

Autophagy is a cellular process that eliminates unnecessary cytoplasmic materials, such as long-age proteins, destroyed organelles, and foreign microorganisms. Macroautophagy (MaA), chaperone-mediated autophagy, and microautophagy are the three main types of autophagy. It is regulated by the integration of signaling from the AMPK and mTOR-ULK1 pathways. Autophagy plays a physiological role in health, and its dysregulation could be a pathophysiologic mechanism in different disease conditions. In the current study, we reviewed papers of Google Scholar database, PubMed, PubMed Central, Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews, MEDLINE, and MedlinePlus with no time limitation and a recent World Health Organization report. In the current review, it could be concluded that autophagy plays many physiological functions, including immune system modulation, and regulates different cellular processes such as metabolism, protein synthesis, and cellular transportation. Dysregulation of autophagy is implicated in tumorigenesis, aging, age-related neurodegeneration, and endothelial dysfunctions. Autophagy dysregulation is also implicated in the newly discovered CoV-COVID-19 pathogenesis.


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