Adipose tissue lipid metabolism: lipolysis

Chung Hwan Cho, Sanil Patel, Prashant Rajbhandari

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


White adipose tissue stores fatty acid (FA) as triglyceride in the lipid droplet organelle of highly specialized cells known as fat cells or adipocytes. Depending on the nutritional state and energy demand, hormonal and biochemical signals converge on activating an elegant and fundamental process known as lipolysis, which involves triglyceride hydrolysis to FAs. Almost six decades of work have vastly expanded our knowledge of lipolysis from enzymatic processes to complex protein assembly, disassembly, and post-translational modification. Research in recent decades ushered in the discovery of new lipolytic enzymes and coregulators and the characterization of numerous factors and signaling pathways that regulate lipid hydrolysis on transcriptional and post-transcriptional levels. This review will discuss recent developments with particular emphasis on the past two years in enzymatic lipolytic pathways and transcriptional regulation of lipolysis. We will summarize the positive and negative regulators of lipolysis, the adipose tissue microenvironment in lipolysis, and the systemic effects of lipolysis. The dynamic nature of adipocyte lipolysis is emerging as an essential regulator of metabolism and energy balance, and we will discuss recent developments in this area.

Original languageEnglish
Article number102114
JournalCurrent Opinion in Genetics and Development
StatePublished - Dec 2023


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