Synaptogyrin regulates neuronal activity dependent autophagy to degrade synaptic vesicle components and pathological Tau
prePrint bioRXiv. 2023-07-04; :
Synapses are specialized neuronal compartments essential for brain communication. Neuronal communication mostly relies on the adequate supply and renovation of synaptic vesicles that fuse with the plasma membrane and release neurotransmitters in response to action potentials. Autophagy is an evolutionary conserved cellular mechanism essential for homeostasis that can be locally regulated in the neuronal synapse. However, the precise mechanisms controlling synaptic autophagy, especially during neuronal communication and pathological scenarios, remain elusive. Here, we report that neuronal activity and amino-acid deprivation regulate synaptic autophagy via distinct molecular mechanisms. We show that Synaptogyrin, a highly abundant presynaptic protein found in synaptic vesicles, is a novel negative regulator of synaptic autophagy in response to neuronal activity without affecting autophagy induction via amino-acid deprivation. We demonstrate that loss of Synaptogyrin modifies the localization of the autophagy protein Atg9 and boosts autophagosome formation at the synapse. Furthermore, activation of synaptic autophagy by loss of Synaptogyrin, but not by amino acid deprivation, leads to the degradation of synaptic vesicle components via autophagy. Reducing the levels of Synaptogyrin results in the degradation of synaptic TAU via autophagy and restores autophagy dysfunction observed in aDrosophilaTau model of Frontotemporal Dementia (FTD). Our data provide novel and valuable information to understand how autophagy is regulated at the synapse in response to neuronal activity and how this process participates in neuronal (dys)function.