Ribophagy is a type of macroautophagy that selectively degrades ribosomes or ribosome-RNA complexes. Double-membraned autophagosomes enclose ribosomes, and then fuse with lysosomes for degradation.

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    Selective autophagy is important for controlled degradation of cellular components. However, a selective autophagic degradation mechanism for ribosomes in mammals has remained unclear. A study now describes non-selective and selective ribosome degradation and a significant role for ‘bystander’ non-selective autophagy.

    • Christian Münch
    •  & Ivan Dikic
    Nature Cell Biology 20, 122-124