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Lipidomic analysis of signaling pathways

Lipidomic analysis of signaling pathways
Lipidomic analysis of signaling pathways
This chapter outlines methods that can be applied to determine the levels of lipids in cells and tissues. In particular, the methods focus upon the extraction and analysis of those lipids critical for monitoring signal transduction pathways. The methods address the analysis of the phosphoinositides, the lipid agonists lysophosphatidic acid and sphingosine 1-phosphate, and the neutral lipid messengers diacylglycerol and ceramide. Additionally, because of the increasing need to determine the dynamics of signaling, the analysis of phospholipids synthesis using stable isotope methods is described. The use of these methods as described or adaptation to permit both approaches should allow investigators to determine changes in signaling lipids and to better understand such processes in most cell types.

The increasing appreciation of the central roles played by lipid signaling pathways has dispelled the misconception that lipids are inert structural components that are involved solely in keeping a cell intact. Advances in our understanding of cell-signaling pathways have identified particular lipids that act to regulate the functions of a number of proteins either by controlling enzyme activity directly, or by localizing proteins to particular intracellular compartments where they perform a specialized role. These lipid-binding domains (e.g., PH, PX, FYVE) have been found in many proteins, and considerable detail is recorded of the structural basis of lipid protein interaction. Additional lipid-binding domains exist, which remain less well characterized (e.g., those that bind phosphatidic acid [PA] or ceramide); however, the important regulatory roles that these lipids play and the pathways involving these messengers are increasingly appreciated.

While the downstream targets are thus being defined, the actual changes in lipid concentration in a stimulated cell or membrane are less characterized. The primary reason for this lack has been a deficiency in methodology. Much of the reported studies of lipid messengers in stimulated cells have depended upon monitoring changes in radio-labeled cells. Many well-documented problems are associated with this type of methodology, including lack of isotopic equilibrium, distinct pools with different turnover rates, and inadequate separation of radio-labeled metabolites; however, much important information has been generated. The second approach has been to make use of the lipid-binding properties of the target protein domains and to generate a tagged fusion protein, generally GFP, which permits identification of a region rich in a signaling lipid (Guillou et al., 2007). This has proved useful in monitoring PI-3-kinase activation in stimulated cells; however, considerable caveats must be raised, not least the problems associated with lipid specificity and the fact that many of these domains have associated protein-binding regions that can compromise the findings. A further problem associated with these two methodologies is that they tend to group lipids together and take no account of the multiple acyl chain structures that occur in all lipids.

These concerns point to the need to determine actual changes in lipid compositions. Until relatively recently, such an analysis was unachievable; however, advances in both chromatographic separation and mass spectrometry (MS) have permitted the development of lipidomic analysis. This chapter outlines a number of methods that allow determination of changes in signaling lipids. Adaptation of the methods here for the analysis of other molecules should be relatively straightforward in the future. Much of the lipidomic research in the United Kingdom is focused upon signaling lipidomics, with particular foci upon phosphoinositide-related signaling in Birmingham and Cambridge (Wakelam) and London (Larijani), upon eicosanoids in Cardiff (O'Donnell), and steroids in London (Griffiths). Meanwhile, the use of stable isotopes has been particularly developed in Southampton (Postle).
0076-6879
233-246
Wakelam, Michael J.O.
3f07f181-8dbc-4807-85d7-9dae0e1f9861
Pettitt, Trevor R.
2fd33bcb-f9aa-4702-8acd-9d4f2338e7d0
Postle, Anthony D.
0fa17988-b4a0-4cdc-819a-9ae15c5dad66
Wakelam, Michael J.O.
3f07f181-8dbc-4807-85d7-9dae0e1f9861
Pettitt, Trevor R.
2fd33bcb-f9aa-4702-8acd-9d4f2338e7d0
Postle, Anthony D.
0fa17988-b4a0-4cdc-819a-9ae15c5dad66

Wakelam, Michael J.O., Pettitt, Trevor R. and Postle, Anthony D. (2007) Lipidomic analysis of signaling pathways. Methods in Enzymology, 432, 233-246. (doi:10.1016/S0076-6879(07)32010-7). (PMID:17954220)

Record type: Article

Abstract

This chapter outlines methods that can be applied to determine the levels of lipids in cells and tissues. In particular, the methods focus upon the extraction and analysis of those lipids critical for monitoring signal transduction pathways. The methods address the analysis of the phosphoinositides, the lipid agonists lysophosphatidic acid and sphingosine 1-phosphate, and the neutral lipid messengers diacylglycerol and ceramide. Additionally, because of the increasing need to determine the dynamics of signaling, the analysis of phospholipids synthesis using stable isotope methods is described. The use of these methods as described or adaptation to permit both approaches should allow investigators to determine changes in signaling lipids and to better understand such processes in most cell types.

The increasing appreciation of the central roles played by lipid signaling pathways has dispelled the misconception that lipids are inert structural components that are involved solely in keeping a cell intact. Advances in our understanding of cell-signaling pathways have identified particular lipids that act to regulate the functions of a number of proteins either by controlling enzyme activity directly, or by localizing proteins to particular intracellular compartments where they perform a specialized role. These lipid-binding domains (e.g., PH, PX, FYVE) have been found in many proteins, and considerable detail is recorded of the structural basis of lipid protein interaction. Additional lipid-binding domains exist, which remain less well characterized (e.g., those that bind phosphatidic acid [PA] or ceramide); however, the important regulatory roles that these lipids play and the pathways involving these messengers are increasingly appreciated.

While the downstream targets are thus being defined, the actual changes in lipid concentration in a stimulated cell or membrane are less characterized. The primary reason for this lack has been a deficiency in methodology. Much of the reported studies of lipid messengers in stimulated cells have depended upon monitoring changes in radio-labeled cells. Many well-documented problems are associated with this type of methodology, including lack of isotopic equilibrium, distinct pools with different turnover rates, and inadequate separation of radio-labeled metabolites; however, much important information has been generated. The second approach has been to make use of the lipid-binding properties of the target protein domains and to generate a tagged fusion protein, generally GFP, which permits identification of a region rich in a signaling lipid (Guillou et al., 2007). This has proved useful in monitoring PI-3-kinase activation in stimulated cells; however, considerable caveats must be raised, not least the problems associated with lipid specificity and the fact that many of these domains have associated protein-binding regions that can compromise the findings. A further problem associated with these two methodologies is that they tend to group lipids together and take no account of the multiple acyl chain structures that occur in all lipids.

These concerns point to the need to determine actual changes in lipid compositions. Until relatively recently, such an analysis was unachievable; however, advances in both chromatographic separation and mass spectrometry (MS) have permitted the development of lipidomic analysis. This chapter outlines a number of methods that allow determination of changes in signaling lipids. Adaptation of the methods here for the analysis of other molecules should be relatively straightforward in the future. Much of the lipidomic research in the United Kingdom is focused upon signaling lipidomics, with particular foci upon phosphoinositide-related signaling in Birmingham and Cambridge (Wakelam) and London (Larijani), upon eicosanoids in Cardiff (O'Donnell), and steroids in London (Griffiths). Meanwhile, the use of stable isotopes has been particularly developed in Southampton (Postle).

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More information

Published date: 2007
Organisations: Clinical & Experimental Sciences

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 195575
URI: https://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/195575
ISSN: 0076-6879
PURE UUID: 6912a14f-1b81-4304-94eb-1c84b40eb9d9
ORCID for Anthony D. Postle: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0001-7361-0756

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Date deposited: 23 Aug 2011 10:58
Last modified: 06 Jun 2018 13:20

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