Lipids are hydrophobic or amphiphilic small molecules that include sterols, waxes, fatty acids and phospholipids, and are insoluble in water and soluble in organic solvent. Biological lipids are generated from ketoacyl and isoprene (CH2=C(CH3)CH=CH2) groups and include glycerolipids, sphingolipids, fatty acids and polyketides. Lipids play roles in energy storage, signalling and as structural components.


Latest Research and Reviews

News and Comment

  • News and Views |

    The entry of remnants of cholesterol-rich lipoproteins, such as low-density lipoprotein (LDL), from the blood stream into the intima of large arteries initiates and then perpetuates atherosclerosis. A study published in Nature sheds new light on this important process by identifying scavenger receptor BI (SR-BI) as a major receptor that mediates LDL delivery across the endothelium into arteries.

    • Xinbo Zhang
    •  & Carlos Fernández-Hernando
  • Research Highlights |

    The scavenger receptor class B member 1 (SRB1) in endothelial cells mediates active transcellular transport of circulating LDL into the artery wall and thereby drives the accumulation of LDL in macrophages, which become foam cells and promote the development of atherosclerosis

    • Irene Fernández-Ruiz
  • News and Views |

    A common missense variant (I148M) in patatin-like phospholipase domain-containing protein 3 (PNPLA3) was strongly linked to human fatty liver disease in 2008, but the underlying mechanisms have since remained unclear. Compelling data from Yang et al., published in Nature Metabolism, suggest that PNPLA3 binds ABHD5, sequestering it and preventing it from activating ATGL, the major intracellular triglyceride lipase.

    • Stefano Romeo
    •  & David B. Savage
    Nature Metabolism 1, 505-506
  • News and Views |

    Chemical probes that irreversibly inhibit protein function may be used across species to discover proteins. Combining phenotypic screening and activity-based protein profiling, a new study uncovers a discrete lipid signaling pathway regulating lifespan in the worm Caenorhabditis elegans.

    • Jürg Gertsch
  • News and Views |

    Alterations in lipid metabolism are closely linked to disorders such as cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes mellitus and non-alcoholic fatty liver disease. A multi-omics study on a mouse genetic reference panel uncovers regulatory networks and potential biomarkers of hepatic lipid metabolism.

    • Joel T. Haas
    •  & Bart Staels