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Nat Rev Gastroenterol Hepatol. 2017 Jun;14(6):343-355. doi: 10.1038/nrgastro.2017.32. Epub 2017 Apr 21.

Lipid droplets and liver disease: from basic biology to clinical implications.

Author information

1
Department of Genetics and Complex Diseases, Harvard T. H. Chan School of Public Health, 655 Huntington Avenue, Boston, Massachusetts 02115, USA.
2
Boston Children's Hospital Department of Gastroenterology, Hepatology and Nutrition, 300 Longwood Avenue Boston, Massachusetts 02115, USA.
3
Department of Cell Biology, Harvard Medical School, 240 Longwood Avenue Boston, Massachusetts 02115, USA.
4
Department of Genetics, Harvard Medical School, 77 Avenue Louis Pasteur Boston, Massachusetts 02115, USA.
5
Howard Hughes Medical Institute, Department of Genetics and Complex Diseases, Harvard T. H. Chan School of Public Health, 655 Huntington Avenue, Boston, Massachusetts 02115, USA.

Abstract

Lipid droplets are dynamic organelles that store neutral lipids during times of energy excess and serve as an energy reservoir during deprivation. Many prevalent metabolic diseases, such as the metabolic syndrome or obesity, often result in abnormal lipid accumulation in lipid droplets in the liver, also called hepatic steatosis. Obesity-related steatosis, or NAFLD in particular, is a major public health concern worldwide and is frequently associated with insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes mellitus. Here, we review the latest insights into the biology of lipid droplets and their role in maintaining lipid homeostasis in the liver. We also offer a perspective of liver diseases that feature lipid accumulation in these lipid storage organelles, which include NAFLD and viral hepatitis. Although clinical applications of this knowledge are just beginning, we highlight new opportunities for identifying molecular targets for treating hepatic steatosis and steatohepatitis.

PMID:
28428634
PMCID:
PMC6319657
DOI:
10.1038/nrgastro.2017.32
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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