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Am J Physiol Endocrinol Metab. 2014 Apr 15;306(8):E854-68. doi: 10.1152/ajpendo.00371.2013. Epub 2014 Feb 11.

A systematic survey of lipids across mouse tissues.

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  • 1Broad Institute, Cambridge, Massachusetts;


Lipids are a diverse collection of macromolecules essential for normal physiology, but the tissue distribution and function for many individual lipid species remain unclear. Here, we report a mass spectrometry survey of lipid abundance across 18 mouse tissues, detecting ~1,000 mass spectrometry features, of which we identify 179 lipids from the glycerolipids, glycerophospholipids, lysophospholipids, acylcarnitines, sphingolipids, and cholesteryl ester classes. Our data reveal tissue-specific organization of lipids and can be used to generate testable hypotheses. For example, our data indicate that circulating triglycerides positively and negatively associated with future diabetes in humans are enriched in mouse adipose tissue and liver, respectively, raising hypotheses regarding the tissue origins of these diabetes-associated lipids. We also integrate our tissue lipid data with gene expression profiles to predict a number of substrates of lipid-metabolizing enzymes, highlighting choline phosphotransferases and sterol O-acyltransferases. Finally, we identify several tissue-specific lipids not present in plasma under normal conditions that may be of interest as biomarkers of tissue injury, and we show that two of these lipids are released into blood following ischemic brain injury in mice. This resource complements existing compendia of tissue gene expression and may be useful for integrative physiology and lipid biology.


biomarkers; lipid metabolism; lipidomics; stroke; tissue physiology and metabolism

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