Autophagy, Neuron-Specific Degradation and Neurodegeneration.
Wang, D., and Hiesinger, P.R. – 2012
Degradation of membrane compartments, organelles and other debris through macroautophagy (hereafter referred to as autophagy) is thought to occur in most, maybe all, cells. We recently reported the discovery of a neuron-specific endomembrane degradation mechanism that depends on the vesicle SNARE neuronal Synaptobrevin (n-Syb) and the vesicle ATPase component V100 (the V0a1 subunit). Loss of n-Syb causes degeneration of adult photoreceptor neurons in Drosophila, reminiscent of adult-onset degeneration in neurons with defective autophagy. Here we explore the potential importance of this newly discovered neuron-specific degradation mechanism in comparison with ubiquitous autophagy machinery for adult-onset neurodegeneration.