Understanding the importance of autophagy in human diseases using Drosophila

Arindam Bhattacharjee, Áron Szabó, Tamás Csizmadia, Hajnalka Laczkó-Dobos, G. Juhász

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

3 Citations (Scopus)


Autophagy is a lysosome-dependent intracellular degradation pathway that has been implicated in the pathogenesis of various human diseases, either positively or negatively impacting disease outcomes depending on the specific context. The majority of medical conditions including cancer, neurodegenerative diseases, infections and immune system disorders and inflammatory bowel disease could probably benefit from therapeutic modulation of the autophagy machinery. Drosophila represents an excellent model animal to study disease mechanisms thanks to its sophisticated genetic toolkit, and the conservation of human disease genes and autophagic processes. Here, we provide an overview of the various autophagy pathways observed both in flies and human cells (macroautophagy, microautophagy and chaperone-mediated autophagy), and discuss Drosophila models of the above-mentioned diseases where fly research has already helped to understand how defects in autophagy genes and pathways contribute to the relevant pathomechanisms.

Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Genetics and Genomics
Publication statusPublished - Jan 1 2019



  • Alzheimer's disease
  • Autophagy
  • Cancer
  • Drosophila
  • Inflammatory bowel disease
  • Neurodegeneration
  • Parkinson's disease

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Biology
  • Genetics

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