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Selective autophagy in cancer: mechanisms, therapeutic implications, and future perspectives.

Molecular Cancer 2024 January 25
Eukaryotic cells engage in autophagy, an internal process of self-degradation through lysosomes. Autophagy can be classified as selective or non-selective depending on the way it chooses to degrade substrates. During the process of selective autophagy, damaged and/or redundant organelles like mitochondria, peroxisomes, ribosomes, endoplasmic reticulum (ER), lysosomes, nuclei, proteasomes, and lipid droplets are selectively recycled. Specific cargo is delivered to autophagosomes by specific receptors, isolated and engulfed. Selective autophagy dysfunction is closely linked with cancers, neurodegenerative diseases, metabolic disorders, heart failure, etc. Through reviewing latest research, this review summarized molecular markers and important signaling pathways for selective autophagy, and its significant role in cancers. Moreover, we conducted a comprehensive analysis of small-molecule compounds targeting selective autophagy for their potential application in anti-tumor therapy, elucidating the underlying mechanisms involved. This review aims to supply important scientific references and development directions for the biological mechanisms and drug discovery of anti-tumor targeting selective autophagy in the future.

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