Phospho-ULK1 assay for monitoring the regulation of autophagy in cells
Autophagy is a cellular process of “self-eating”, defined as the lysosomal degradation of old or damaged intracellular components to generate nutrients and energy. The ULK1 kinase is the key initiator of the autophagic process in mammalian cells. The protein is activated by AMPK in response to nutrient starvation and cellular stresses, leading to autophagy up-regulation, cell survival and homeostasis. In presence of nutrients and growth factors, mTOR phosphorylates ULK1 on Ser758, which inactivates the kinase and leads to autophagy down-regulation. Excessive or deficient autophagy is associated with cancers, immune/infectious diseases, neurodegeneration and cardio-metabolic disorders.
This cell-based assay is designed to monitor the modulation of phosphorylated ULK1 (Serine 757 in mouse / Serine 758 in human) which is a hallmark of autophagy signaling.