Our latest Minireview: Lipid droplets and stemness

We are extremely happy to share our last minireview compiling the knowledge about the role of lipid droplets for stemness and chemoresistance in cancer! This was a truly collaborative effort of our team, so much so that authorship order was determined by draw…

In this minireview, we first describe the structure and biogenesis of these cellular organelles, also known as liposomes or lipid bodies. Additinally, we explore the role of lipid droplets (LDs) beyond the traditional view as simple fat storages. In fact their functions go from energy supply and membrane synthesis, nutrient, oxygen and ER stress management, redox homeostasis, and pro- and anti-inflammatory signalling.

Figure 1. Structure and cellular functions of lipid droplets.

We next revise and comment the main literature supporting an essential role for lipid droplets sustaining stemness and promoting chemoresistance in cancer. In fact, high levels of LDs are strongly associated with cancer aggressiveness and chemotherapy resistance in different tumour types. Considering this, measurement of LD accumulation could be potentially used as a prognostic biomarker, also with predictive value in terms of treatment response to conventional therapies.

Figure 2. Features of cells with high content of lipid droplets.

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