Pink1- And PARK2-mediated local mitophagy in distal neuronal axons

Ghazaleh Ashrafi, Thomas L. Schwarz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

32 Scopus citations


Mutations in the PINK1 and PARK2/PARKIN genes are associated with hereditary early onset Parkinson disease (PD), and in cell lines the corresponding gene products play a critical role in mitophagic clearance of damaged mitochondria. In neurons, however, where the extraordinary cellular shapes pose particular challenges for maintaining healthy mitochondria, the pathways of mitophagy are less well understood. Both the location at which mitophagy occurs and the involvement of PINK1 and PARK2 have been controversial. Here we review our recent study where we found that selective damage to a subset of axonal mitochondria causes them to be engulfed within autophagosomes and cleared locally within the axon without the need for transport back to the soma. We also found this process to be completely dependent on neuronal PINK1 and PARK2.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)187-189
Number of pages3
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 2015


  • Axon
  • Mitochondria
  • Mitophagy
  • Neuron
  • PINK1
  • Parkin


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