P62/SQSTM1 binds with claudin-2 to target for selective autophagy in stressed intestinal epithelium

Rizwan Ahmad, Balawant Kumar, Raju Lama Tamang, Geoffrey A. Talmon, Punita Dhawan, Amar B. Singh

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Impaired autophagy promotes Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD). Claudin-2 is upregulated in IBD however its role in the pathobiology remains uncertain due to its complex regulation, including by autophagy. Irrespective, claudin-2 expression protects mice from DSS colitis. This study was undertaken to examine if an interplay between autophagy and claudin-2 protects from colitis and associated epithelial injury. Crypt culture and intestinal epithelial cells (IECs) are subjected to stress, including starvation or DSS, the chemical that induces colitis in-vivo. Autophagy flux, cell survival, co-immunoprecipitation, proximity ligation assay, and gene mutational studies are performed. These studies reveal that under colitis/stress conditions, claudin-2 undergoes polyubiquitination and P62/SQSTM1-assisted degradation through autophagy. Inhibiting autophagy-mediated claudin-2 degradation promotes cell death and thus suggest that claudin-2 degradation promotes autophagy flux to promote cell survival. Overall, these data inform for the previously undescribed role for claudin-2 in facilitating IECs survival under stress conditions, which can be harnessed for therapeutic advantages.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number740
JournalCommunications biology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Dec 2023

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • General Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology
  • General Agricultural and Biological Sciences


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