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J Lipid Res. 2002 Oct;43(10):1585-94.

Hormone-sensitive lipase: control of intracellular tri-(di-)acylglycerol and cholesteryl ester hydrolysis.

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Division of Endocrinology, Department of Medicine, Stanford University, Stanford, CA, USA.


Hormone-sensitive lipase (HSL) is an intracellular neutral lipase that is capable of hydrolyzing triacylglycerols, diacylglycerols, monoacylglycerols, and cholesteryl esters, as well as other lipid and water soluble substrates. HSL activity is regulated post-translationally by phosphorylation and also by pretranslational mechanisms. The enzyme is highly expressed in adipose tissue and steroidogenic tissues, with lower amounts expressed in cardiac and skeletal muscle, macrophages, and islets. Studies of the structure of HSL have identified several amino acids and regions of the molecule that are critical for enzymatic activity and regulation of HSL. This has led to important insights into its function, including the interaction of HSL with other intracellular proteins, such as adipocyte lipid binding protein. Accumulating evidence has defined important functions for HSL in normal physiology, affecting adipocyte lipolysis, steroidogenesis, spermatogenesis, and perhaps insulin secretion and insulin action; however, direct links between abnormal expression or genetic variations of HSL and human disorders, such as obesity, insulin resistance, type 2 diabetes, and hyperlipidemia, await further clarification. The published reports examining the regulation, and function of HSL in normal physiology and disease are reviewed in this paper.

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