Induction of autophagy by phosphate starvation in an Atg11-dependent manner in Saccharomyces cerevisiae

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16 Citations (Scopus)


Upon nutrient starvation, eukaryotic cells exploit autophagy to reconstruct cellular components. Although autophagy is induced by depletion of various nutrients such as nitrogen, carbon, amino acids, and sulfur in yeast, it was previously ambiguous whether phosphate depletion could trigger the induction of autophagy. Here, we showed that phosphate depletion induced autophagy in Saccharomyces cerevisiae, albeit to a lesser extent than nitrogen starvation. It is known that rapid inactivation of the target of rapamycin complex 1 (TORC1) signaling pathway contributes to Atg13 dephosphorylation, which is one of the cues for autophagy induction. We found that phosphate starvation caused Atg13 dephosphorylation with slower kinetics than nitrogen starvation, suggesting that poor autophagic activity during phosphate starvation was associated with slower inactivation of the TORC1 pathway. Phosphate starvation-induced autophagy requires Atg11, an adaptor protein for selective autophagy, but not its cargo recognition domain. These results suggested that Atg11 plays important roles in low-level nonselective autophagy.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)522-527
Number of pages6
JournalBiochemical and biophysical research communications
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2017 Jan 29


  • Autophagy
  • Phosphate metabolism
  • Target of rapamycin complex 1
  • Yeast

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biophysics
  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology


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