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Department of Biological Sciences

Dodge Hall Rm 375
118 Library Dr
Rochester, MI 48309-4479
(location map)
(248) 370-3550
fax: (248) 370-4225
biology@oakland.edu

Department of Biological Sciences

Dodge Hall Rm 375
118 Library Dr
Rochester, MI 48309-4479
(location map)
(248) 370-3550
fax: (248) 370-4225
biology@oakland.edu

Elizabeth Delorme-Axford

headshot of Elizabeth Delorme-Axford
Elizabeth Delorme-Axford
Assistant Professor, Ph.D.
307 MSC
(248) 370-4906
Lab location: 310 MSC
Lab phone: (248) 370-3592
delormeaxford@oakland.edu

Courses: 

BIO 3232 Biochemistry I

Research: Molecular mechanisms regulating cellular autophagy

Autophagy is a highly conserved pathway (from yeast to human) of cellular “self-eating” that is essential for metabolism and survival during stress conditions. Basal autophagy is low, but is upregulated during stress conditions such as nutrient deprivation and pathogen infection. The de novo formation of the double-membrane autophagosome is the characteristic morphological feature of autophagy. A late step in autophagy is the fusion of the autophagosome with the vacuole (in yeast) or the lysosome (in mammalian cells). Within the degradative compartment, the autophagic cargo is broken down, and the resulting macromolecules are transported to the cytosol for reuse.

Finely tuned regulatory mechanisms govern autophagy within the cell, and aberrant autophagy is associated with diverse human pathologies such as neurodegeneration, cancer, metabolic and lysosomal storage disorders, and infectious diseases. In humans, perturbation of autophagy (for example, too much or too little) can have deleterious effects on cell health and survival, contributing to disease pathogenesis.

Current work in the Delorme-Axford lab focuses on identifying the molecular mechanisms regulating cellular autophagy in the model organism Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Our studies apply a “yeast to human” approach of identifying conserved targets in yeast and expanding to relevant models of human disease. The long-term goal of the lab is to understand the multifaceted roles that autophagy plays in the cell, and to develop new strategies targeting autophagy as a therapeutic. Students can expect to incorporate biochemical, molecular, and cell biological techniques in their projects.

Selected Publications:

Elizabeth Delorme-Axford NCBI publication list

Delorme-Axford E and Klionsky DJ. The LC3-conjugation machinery specifies cargo loading and secretion of extracellular vesicles. Autophagy. 2020. July 16(7): 1169-1171. Editor’s Corner. DOI: 10.1080/15548627.2020.1760057

Delorme-Axford E and Klionsky DJ. On the edge of degradation: Autophagy regulation by RNA decay. Wiley Interdiscip Rev RNA. 2019 May;10(3):e1522. DOI: 10.1002/wrna.1522

Delorme-Axford E, Abernathy E, Lennemann NJ, Bernard A, Ariosa A, Coyne CB, Kirkegaard K, Klionsky DJ. The exoribonuclease Xrn1 is a post-transcriptional negative regulator of autophagy. Autophagy. 2018;14(5):898-912. DOI: 10.1080/15548627.2018.1441648

Delorme-Axford E and Klionsky DJ. Transcriptional and post-transcriptional regulation of autophagy in the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae. J Biol Chem. 2018 Apr 13;293(15):5396-5403. DOI: 10.1074/jbc.R117.804641

McConkey CA, Delorme-Axford E, Nickerson CA, Kim KS, Sadovsky Y, Boyle JP, Coyne CB. A three-dimensional co-culture system for the modeling of placental syncytiotrophoblast function and microbial resistance. Sci Adv. 2016 Mar 4;2(3):e1501462. DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.1501462

Yao Z, Delorme-Axford E, Backues SK, Klionsky DJ. Atg41/Icy2 regulates autophagosome formation. Autophagy. 2015;11(12):2288-99. DOI: 10.1080/15548627.2015.1107692

Bernard A, Jin M, González-Rodríguez P, Füllgrabe J, Delorme-Axford E, Backues SK, Joseph B, Klionsky DJ. Rph1/KDM4 mediates nutrient-limitation signaling that leads to the transcriptional induction of autophagy. Curr Biol. 2015 Mar 2;25(5):546-55. DOI: 10.1016/j.cub.2014.12.049

Delorme-Axford E, Guimaraes RS, Reggiori F, Klionsky DJ. The yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae: an overview of methods to study autophagy progression. Methods. 2015 Mar;75:3-12. DOI: 10.1016/j.ymeth.2014.12.008

Delorme-Axford E, Morosky S, Bomberger J, Stolz DB, Jackson WT, Coyne CB. BPIFB3 regulates autophagy and coxsackievirus B replication through a noncanonical pathway independent of the core initiation machinery. mBio. 2014 Dec 9;5(6):e02147. DOI: 10.1128/mBio.02147-14

Delorme-Axford E, Sadovsky Y, Coyne CB. The placenta as a barrier to viral infections. Annu Rev Virol, 2014 Nov;1(1):133-46. DOI: 10.1146/annurev-virology-031413-085524

Delorme-Axford E, Sadovsky Y, Coyne CB. Lipid-raft- and SRC family kinase-dependent entry of coxsackievirus B into human placental trophoblasts. J Virol. 2013 Aug;87(15):8569-81. DOI: 10.1128/JVI.00708-13

Delorme-Axford E, Donker RB, Mouillet JF, Chu T, Bayer A, Ouyang Y, Wang T, Stolz DB, Sarkar SN, Morelli AE, Sadovsky Y, Coyne CB. Human placental trophoblasts confer viral resistance to recipient cells. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2013 Jul 16;110(29):12048-53.
*Winner of the Cozzarelli Prize in Biomedical Sciences. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1304718110