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Stem Cells Int. 2017;2017:1656053. doi: 10.1155/2017/1656053. Epub 2017 Aug 13.

An Overview of Lipid Droplets in Cancer and Cancer Stem Cells.

Author information

1
German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ), Heidelberg, Baden-Württemberg, Germany.
2
Physical Science and Engineering (PSE) Division, King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST), Thuwal, Saudi Arabia.
3
Biological and Environmental Science and Engineering (BESE) Division, King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST), Thuwal, Saudi Arabia.
4
Department of Applied Science and Technology (DISAT), Politecnico di Torino, Torino, Italy.
5
BioNEM Lab, Department of Experimental and Clinical Medicine, University Magna Graecia of Catanzaro, Catanzaro, Italy.

Abstract

For decades, lipid droplets have been considered as the main cellular organelles involved in the fat storage, because of their lipid composition. However, in recent years, some new and totally unexpected roles have been discovered for them: (i) they are active sites for synthesis and storage of inflammatory mediators, and (ii) they are key players in cancer cells and tissues, especially in cancer stem cells. In this review, we summarize the main concepts related to the lipid droplet structure and function and their involvement in inflammatory and cancer processes.

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