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Prog Lipid Res. 2011 Oct;50(4):348-56. doi: 10.1016/j.plipres.2011.04.001. Epub 2011 May 17.

The contribution of the Drosophila model to lipid droplet research.

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Max Planck Institute for Biophysical Chemistry, Research Group Molecular Physiology, Department of Molecular Developmental Biology, Am Fassberg 11, 37077 Göttingen, Germany.


Intracellular lipid droplets have long been misconceived as evolutionarily conserved but functionally frugal components of cellular metabolism. An ever-growing repertoire of functions has elevated lipid droplets to fully-fledged cellular organelles. Insights into the multifariousness of these organelles have been obtained from a range of model systems now employed for lipid droplet research including the fruit fly, Drosophila melanogaster. This review summarizes the progress in fly lipid droplet research along four main avenues: the role of lipid droplets in fat storage homeostasis, the control of lipid droplet structure, the lipid droplet surface as a dynamic protein-association platform, and lipid droplets as mobile organelles. Moreover, the research potential of the fruit fly model is discussed with respect to the prevailing general questions in lipid droplet biology.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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