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30 October 2023 Temporal Dynamic Regulation of Autophagy and Senescence Induction in Response to Radiation Exposure
Miho Noguchi, Tomokazu Ihara, Keiji Suzuki, Akinari Yokoya
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Autophagy and senescence are closely related cellular responses to genotoxic stress, and play significant roles in the execution of cellular responses to radiation exposure. However, little is known about their interplay in the fate-decision of cells receiving lethal doses of radiation. Here, we report that autophagy precedes the establishment of premature senescence in normal human fibroblasts exposed to lethal doses of radiation. Activation of the p53-dependent DNA damage response caused sustained dephosphorylation of RB proteins and consequent cell cycle arrest, concurrently with Ulk1 dephosphorylation at Ser638 by PPM1D, which promoted autophagy induction 1–2 days after irradiation. In addition, mitochondrial fragmentation became obvious 1–2 days after irradiation, and autophagy was further enhanced. However, Ulk1 levels decreased significantly after 2 days, resulting in lower LC3-II levels. An autophagic flux assay using chloroquine (CQ) also revealed that the flux in irradiated cells gradually decreased over 30 days. In contrast, lysosomal augmentation started at 1 day, became significantly upregulated after 5 days, and continued for over 30 days. After a rapid decrease in autophagy, p16 expression increased and senescence was established, but autophagic activity remained reduced. These results demonstrated that X-ray irradiation triggered two processes, autophagy and senescence, with the former being temporary and regulated by DNA damage response and mitophagy, and the latter being sustained and regulated by persistent cell cycle arrest. The interplay between autophagy and senescence seems to be essential for the proper implementation of the cellular response to radiation exposure.

Miho Noguchi, Tomokazu Ihara, Keiji Suzuki, and Akinari Yokoya "Temporal Dynamic Regulation of Autophagy and Senescence Induction in Response to Radiation Exposure," Radiation Research 200(6), 538-547, (30 October 2023).
Received: 16 August 2023; Accepted: 14 October 2023; Published: 30 October 2023
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