PerspectiveCell Biology

ESCRTs offer repair service

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Science  06 Apr 2018:
Vol. 360, Issue 6384, pp. 33-34
DOI: 10.1126/science.aat2630

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Summary

Repair or replace? Be it our stereos, our saucepans, or our socks, today's society encourages us to shun the repairman and toss damaged goods. Our cells face similar decisions when dealing with damaged organelles. Although they can be degraded through the process of autophagy, it seems that cells do not always go straight for the bin and instead employ some nifty tricks to stitch damaged organelles back together. On page 49 of this issue, Skowyra et al. (1) expose an unexpected role for the endosomal sorting complex required for transport (ESCRT)–III machinery in repairing damaged endolysosomes, which has important consequences for the maintenance of organelle function and cell survival.