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Cell Metab. 2009 Jan 7;9(1):11-22. doi: 10.1016/j.cmet.2008.10.001.

Oxygen sensors at the crossroad of metabolism.

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  • 1Vesalius Research Center, K.U. Leuven, Leuven, B-3000, Belgium.


Aerobic organisms developed mechanisms to protect themselves against a shortage of oxygen (O(2)). Recent studies reveal that O(2) sensors, belonging to the novel class of 2-oxoglutarate dependent iron(ii)-dioxygenases, have more important roles in metabolism than anticipated. Here, we provide a "metabolo-centric" overview of the role of the PHD/FIH members of this family in metabolism, in particular on how they regulate O(2) supply and consumption, energy compensation and conservation, O(2) conformance and hypoxia tolerance, redox and pH homeostasis, and other vital metabolic processes with implications in health and disease. These insights may offer novel opportunities for the treatment of ischemic diseases.

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