Inflammation and lipid signaling for novel diagnosis and treatment of metabolic diseases

Lipids are a group of hydrophobic compounds that are generally found compartmentalized and serve as a major energy source of the body. Other lipid-related functions range from regulatory functions (i.e. hormones; bile acid precursors) to serving as structural component of the cell and its organelles (i.e. phospholipids and cholesterol). Due to these multiple functions, lipids play a central role in a large range of disorders. Among different physiological processes that are affected by lipid disturbances, inflammation is likely one of the most important. While designed to detect damage and foreign invading factors, the inflammatory response is dysregulated when lipid disturbances arise such as under obese conditions during which patients exhibit a chronic low-grade inflammatory response.