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Dev Dyn. 2010 May;239(5):1365-77. doi: 10.1002/dvdy.22234.

Lipid transport and signaling in Caenorhabditis elegans.

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Department of Biology, McGill University, Montreal, Quebec, Canada.


The strengths of the Caenorhabditis elegans model have been recently applied to the study of the pathways of lipid storage, transport, and signaling. As the lipid storage field has recently been reviewed, in this minireview we (1) discuss some recent studies revealing important physiological roles for lipases in mobilizing lipid reserves, (2) describe various pathways of lipid transport, with a particular focus on the roles of lipoproteins, (3) debate the utility of using C. elegans as a model for human dyslipidemias that impinge on atherosclerosis, and (4) describe several systems where lipids affect signaling, highlighting the particular properties of lipids as information-carrying molecules. We conclude that the study of lipid biology in C. elegans exemplifies the advantages afforded by a whole-animal model system where interactions between tissues and organs, and functions such as nutrient absorption, distribution, and storage, as well as reproduction can all be studied simultaneously.

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