AMBRA1 is able to induce mitophagy via LC3 binding, regardless of PARKIN and p62/SQSTM1

F. Strappazzon, F. Nazio, M. Corrado, V. Cianfanelli, A. Romagnoli, G. M. Fimia, S. Campello, R. Nardacci, M. Piacentini, M. Campanella, F. Cecconi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Damaged mitochondria are eliminated by mitophagy, a selective form of autophagy whose dysfunction associates with neurodegenerative diseases. PINK1, PARKIN and p62/SQTMS1 have been shown to regulate mitophagy, leaving hitherto ill-defined the contribution by key players in 'general' autophagy. In basal conditions, a pool of AMBRA1 - an upstream autophagy regulator and a PARKIN interactor - is present at the mitochondria, where its pro-autophagic activity is inhibited by Bcl-2. Here we show that, upon mitophagy induction, AMBRA1 binds the autophagosome adapter LC3 through a LIR (LC3 interacting region) motif, this interaction being crucial for regulating both canonical PARKIN-dependent and -independent mitochondrial clearance. Moreover, forcing AMBRA1 localization to the outer mitochondrial membrane unleashes a massive PARKIN- and p62-independent but LC3-dependent mitophagy. These results highlight a novel role for AMBRA1 as a powerful mitophagy regulator, through both canonical or noncanonical pathways.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)419-432
Number of pages14
JournalCell Death and Differentiation
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2015

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cell Biology
  • Molecular Biology


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