Lysosomes: An Introduction
© 2016 John Wiley & Sons, Inc. All rights reserved. Late endosomes and lysosomes (LE/Ly) are the main digestive organelles of eukaryotic cells. The study of lysosomes began with the microscopic observations summarized by E. Metchnikoff in the late 19th century. He and his contemporaries reported their direct microscopic analysis on the uptake of foreign particles into cells, and the subsequent digestion of these particles. After the discovery of lysosomes by Christian de Duve and his coworkers, the idea that lysosomal defects might be the underlying cause of the storage diseases began to be considered. The clear demonstration of association of these storage disorders with lysosomes was first made by H.G. Hers. From the 1980s to the present, there has been an explosive growth in the number of studies of various aspects of lysosome biology, and many aspects of lysosomal biogenesis and function are becoming well understood.
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