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Cholesterol. 2011;2011:176802. doi: 10.1155/2011/176802. Epub 2011 Jan 20.

The Fruit Fly Drosophila melanogaster as a Model System to Study Cholesterol Metabolism and Homeostasis.

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Graduate School of Life and Environmental Sciences, University of Tsukuba, Tennoudai 1-1-1, Tsukuba, Ibaraki 305-8572, Japan.


Cholesterol has long been recognized for its versatile roles in influencing the biophysical properties of cell membranes and for serving as a precursor of steroid hormones. While many aspects of cholesterol biosynthesis are well understood, little is currently known about the molecular mechanisms of cholesterol metabolism and homeostasis. Recently, genetic approaches in the fruit fly, Drosophila melanogaster, have been successfully used for the analysis of molecular mechanisms that regulate cholesterol metabolism and homeostasis. This paper summarizes the recent studies on genes that regulate cholesterol metabolism and homeostasis, including neverland, Niemann Pick type C(NPC) disease genes, and DHR96.

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