Emerging targets in lipid-based therapy


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Abstract

Graphical abstractThe use of prostaglandins and NSAIDS in the clinic has proven that lipid mediators and their associated pathways make attractive therapeutic targets. When contemplating therapies involving lipid pathways, several basic agents come to mind. There are the enzymes and accessory proteins that lead to the metabolism of lipid substrates, provided through diet or through actions of lipases, the subsequent lipid products, and finally the lipid sensors or receptors. There is abundant evidence that molecules along this lipid continuum can serve as prognostic and diagnostic indicators and are in fact viable therapeutic targets. Furthermore, lipids themselves can be used as therapeutics. Despite this, the vernacular dialog pertaining to “biomarkers” does not routinely include mention of lipids, though this is rapidly changing. Collectively these agents are becoming more appreciated for their respective roles in diverse disease processes from cancer to preterm labor and are receiving their due appreciation after decades of ground work in the lipid field. By relating examples of disease processes that result from dysfunction along the lipid continuum, as well as examples of lipid therapies and emerging technologies, this review is meant to inspire further reading and discovery.

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