The role of autophagy in liver epithelial cells and its impact on systemic homeostasis

Luana Tomaipitinca, Sara Mandatori, Romina Mancinelli, Federico Giulitti, Simonetta Petrungaro, Viviana Moresi, Antonio Facchiano, Elio Ziparo, Eugenio Gaudio, Claudia Giampietri

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Autophagy plays a role in several physiological and pathological processes as it controls the turnover rate of cellular components and influences cellular homeostasis. The liver plays a central role in controlling organisms’ metabolism, regulating glucose storage, plasma proteins and bile synthesis and the removal of toxic substances. Liver functions are particularly sensitive to autophagy modulation. In this review we summarize studies investigating how autophagy influences the hepatic metabolism, focusing on fat accumulation and lipids turnover. We also describe how autophagy affects bile production and the scavenger function within the complex homeostasis of the liver. We underline the role of hepatic autophagy in counteracting the metabolic syndrome and the associated cardiovascular risk. Finally, we highlight recent reports demonstrating how the autophagy occurring within the liver may affect skeletal muscle homeostasis as well as different extrahepatic solid tumors, such as melanoma.

Original languageEnglish
Article number827
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2019


  • Autophagy
  • Cancer
  • Lipid droplets
  • Liver
  • Metabolism
  • Oxidative stress

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Food Science
  • Nutrition and Dietetics


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