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      Sphingolipids and lipid rafts: Novel concepts and methods of analysis

      Chemistry and Physics of Lipids
      Elsevier BV

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          Abstract

          <p class="first" id="P1">About twenty years ago, the functional lipid raft model of the plasma membrane was published. It took into account decades of research showing that cellular membranes are not just homogenous mixtures of lipids and proteins. Lateral anisotropy leads to assembly of membrane domains with specific lipid and protein composition regulating vesicular traffic, cell polarity, and cell signaling pathways in a plethora of biological processes. However, what appeared to be a clearly defined entity of clustered raft lipids and proteins became increasingly fluid over the years, and many of the fundamental questions about biogenesis and structure of lipid rafts remained unanswered. Experimental obstacles in visualizing lipids and their interactions hampered progress in understanding just how big rafts are, where and when they are formed, and with which proteins raft lipids interact. In recent years, we have begun to answer some of these questions and sphingolipids may take center stage in re-defining the meaning and functional significance of lipid rafts. In addition to the archetypical cholesterol-sphingomyelin raft with liquid ordered (Lo) phase and the liquid-disordered (Ld) non-raft regions of cellular membranes, a third type of microdomains termed ceramide-rich platforms (CRPs) with gel-like structure has been identified. CRPs are “ceramide rafts” that may offer some fresh view on the membrane mesostructure and answer several critical questions for our understanding of lipid rafts. </p>

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          Author and article information

          Journal
          Chemistry and Physics of Lipids
          Chemistry and Physics of Lipids
          Elsevier BV
          00093084
          November 2018
          November 2018
          : 216
          : 114-131
          Article
          10.1016/j.chemphyslip.2018.08.003
          6196108
          30194926
          2b565b8a-221c-4985-86d2-313f802c1a36
          © 2018

          https://www.elsevier.com/tdm/userlicense/1.0/


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