BMC Seminar Thursday, December 6th at 12:00 in room 343 Læknagarður
Speaker: Margrét Helga Ögmundsdóttir, Adjunct Lecturer at Faculty of Medicine, University of Iceland
Title: Functional properties of the autophagy protein ATG7
Abstract: Autophagy is a degradation process required to maintain cellular homeostasis. The E1-like enzyme ATG7 is a key component of the autophagy machinery, with the main function of facilitating formation of autophagosomes by lipidation of members of the LC3/GABARAP protein family. By analyzing mRNA-sequencing data we found that in addition to the full-length ATG7 isoform, various tissues express a shorter isoform lacking an exon in the C-terminal part of the protein, termed ATG7(2). We found that this shorter isoform fails to bind and lipidate LC3/GABARAPs. We have thus identified an isoform of ATG7 that is unable to carry out the critical function of ATG7 in the autophagy process. Analyzing the function of this shorter isoform is critical for elucidating the physiological role of ATG7 in health and disease. These results will be discussed and put into context of the role of autophagy in cancer.