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    In macrophages autophagy assists antigen presentation, affects cytokine release, and promotes intracellular pathogen elimination. In some cells autophagy is modulated by a signaling pathway that employs Gαi3, Activator of G-protein Signaling-3 (AGS3/GPSM1), and Regulator of G-protein Signaling 19 (RGS19). As macrophages express each of these proteins, we tested their importance in regulating macrophage autophagy. We assessed LC3 processing and the formation of LC3 puncta in bone marrow derived macrophages prepared from wild type, Gnai3(-/-), Gpsm1(-/-), or Rgs19(-/-) mice following amino acid starvation or Nigericin treatment. In addition, we evaluated rapamycin-induced autophagic proteolysis rates by long-lived protein degradation assays and anti-autophagic action after rapamycin induction in wild type, Gnai3(-/-), and Gpsm1(-/-) macrophages. In similar assays we compared macrophages treated or not with pertussis toxin, an inhibitor of GPCR (G-protein couple receptor) triggered Gαi nucleotide exchange. Despite previous findings, the level of basal autophagy, autophagic induction, autophagic flux, autophagic degradation and the anti-autophagic action in macrophages that lacked Gαi3, AGS3, or RGS19; or had been treated with pertussis toxin, were similar to controls. These results indicate that while Gαi signaling may impact autophagy in some cell types it does not in macrophages.


    Ali Vural, Travis J McQuiston, Joe B Blumer, Chung Park, Il-Young Hwang, Yolanda Williams-Bey, Chong-Shan Shi, Dzwokai Zach Ma, John H Kehrl. Normal autophagic activity in macrophages from mice lacking Gαi3, AGS3, or RGS19. PloS one. 2013;8(11):e81886

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    PMID: 24312373

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