NV junctions (nucleus–vacuole junctions) in Saccharomyces cerevisiae are MCSs (membrane contact sites) formed through specific interactions between Vac8p on the vacuole membrane and Nvj1p in the outer nuclear membrane, which is continuous with the perinuclear ER (endoplasmic reticulum). NV junctions mediate a unique autophagic process that degrades portions of the yeast nucleus through a process called ‘piecemeal microautophagy of the nucleus’ (PMN). Our studies suggest that the lipid composition of NV junctions plays an important role in the biogenesis of PMN structures. NV junctions represent a unique model system for studying the biology of ER MCSs, as well as the molecular mechanism of selective microautophagy.

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