TFEB links autophagy to lysosomal biogenesis

Carmine Settembre, Chiara Di Malta, Vinicia Assunta Polito, Moises Garcia Arencibia, Francesco Vetrini, Serkan Erdin, Serpil Uckac Erdin, Tuong Huynh, Diego Medina, Pasqualina Colella, Marco Sardiello, David C. Rubinsztein, Andrea Ballabio

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Autophagy is a cellular catabolic process that relies on the cooperation of autophagosomes and lysosomes. During starvation, the cell expands both compartments to enhance degradation processes. We found that starvation activates a transcriptional program that controls major steps of the autophagic pathway, including autophagosome formation, autophagosome-lysosome fusion, and substrate degradation. The transcription factor EB (TFEB), a master gene for lysosomal biogenesis, coordinated this program by driving expression of autophagy and lysosomal genes. Nuclear localization and activity of TFEB were regulated by serine phosphorylation mediated by the extracellular signal-regulated kinase 2, whose activity was tuned by the levels of extracellular nutrients. Thus, a mitogen-activated protein kinase-dependent mechanism regulates autophagy by controlling the biogenesis and partnership of two distinct cellular organelles.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1429-1433
Number of pages5
Issue number6036
Publication statusPublished - Jun 17 2011

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General


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