What have lipids to do with the worst pandemic ever?
Dysmetabolism is rapidly spreading worldwide and gives rise to obesity, followed by other diseases. Yet, there is no diagnostic test that can be used as a warning before it is too late.
Today we are under threat not only from Covid-19 but another even worse pandemic is spreading worldwide and that is obesity, unhealthy weight. This disease does not only cause serious health problems globally but it can also lead to other diseases such as diabetes type 2, cardiovascular disease, liver disease, dementia and cancer. Obesity is driven by the consumption of processed foods, snacks, and soft drinks that are designed so that they even can become addictive. Metabolic parameters can long be maintained in a physiological range. However, once the metabolic overload has overwhelmed the homeostatic control systems, the damage leads to disease.
It is here that the lipids come into play. Lipid homeostasis is central to health. When lipid metabolism becomes dysfunctional, it can turn into a driver for the gamut of obesity-related complications. Amazingly, what is lacking are diagnostic tests that can recognize dysmetabolism before it turns into disease and becomes irreversible. The situation for obesity is like trying to combat Covid without an assay for the virus.
Most excitingly, our studies demonstrate that lipids could provide a means to monitor dysmetabolism. Plasma cholesterol and triglycerides have already proven their worth as useful biomarkers. When you add the complement of lipids in our lipidomes to the analysis, then the differentiation power becomes formidable. The fact that pathological changes occurring in our body organs seem to be mirrored in the blood lipidome could provide the basis for the diagnosis of dysmetabolism. Strangely neglected, lipid metabolism is now emerging as a research area with great potential.
Here is what you can learn
• What are the drivers of the obesity pandemic
• Lipid metabolism homeostasis as a key to dysmetabolism diagnostics
• Lipidomics analysis as a quick and reliable tool to monitor dysmetabolism
Prof. Kai Simons
Founder and CEO of Lipotype