March 14, 2018 - Today the earth and the heavens smile at me;
today the sun reaches the bottom of my soul; today I've looked at
the calendar... I've looked at it and I have realized that...
today's the day! (With thanks to Gustavo Adolfo for the
March 7, 2018 - Our recent JLR paper on palmitoleic acid isomers
in phagocytic cells is commented
upon briefly but very accurately in the
Lipid Web blog. This is the third time that our work is
mentioned in such a prestigious place. We thank Dr. Christie for the
February 20, 2018 - Dennis Vance, another of the lipid research
giants of our era, wrote a very enjoyable
Reflection article last fall in JBC. In it, we read:
"Previously, one could possibly have developed an inhibitor of PEMT
(phosphatidylethanolamine N-methyltransferase) that might
have revealed the role of PEMT in evolutionary biology. However,
there is always concern about incomplete inhibition and off-target
effects of inhibitors, whereas gene-targeting technology is very
specific and unambiguous." True, of course, but just in the previous
paragraph, the author noted that in Pmet-/- animals the
amount of the active form of hepatic CTP:phosphocholine
cytidylyltransferase is 60% higher than in wild type animals, to
maintain phosphatidylcholine levels. So we wonder, could not gene
compensations in k.o. animals have an influence on something?
February 16, 2018 - It took quite a bit more than blood, sweat
and tears, but our new toy, a QTRAP
4500, the fifth of the series, is home at last. Now it is our turn
to see how beautifully this little monster does.
February 13, 2018 - Several years ago it was
reported that the orphan receptor GPR120 is an omega-3 fatty
acid receptor which mediates the anti-inflammatory and
insulin-sensitizing effects of these fatty acids. A very recent
paper in Cell Metabolism suggests that other orphan receptor,
GP40, is activated by members of the novel family of fatty acid
hydroxy fatty acyl esters. Grab some soda and pop corn and get ready
to enjoy future works on this engaging subject (no pun intended).
February 9, 2018 - A technological note on lipids just published
Nature Methods caught our eye for its subheading, an ultimate
declaration of lipidological principles: "Fats add structure, they
signal, they interact. In the lab, lipids are tough to work with but
worth the challenge."
February 8, 2018 - Didn't they want some news releases? Here is
one: "Novel lipids as possible markers for immunometabolic diseases"
News section of the official website of CIBER-ISCIII (in
Spanish; use the browser's built-in translator).
February 7, 2018 - Some scattered thoughts that cross one's mind
after browsing today's press: "let them invent, that later we will
take advantage of their inventions. For, I trust and
hope you will be convinced as
I am, the electric bulb shines equally well here as in the
place where it was invented." Different situation, same idea,
January 30, 2018 - Essential fatty acid deficiency, especially
for cells in culture, is seldom appreciated. Very few
studies have been carried out to document alterations in phospholipid molecular species as a result of serum starvation or
depletion of polyunsaturated fatty acids during tissue culture. A
paper by the Murphy group just appearing in JLR Papers in Press
fills the gap, and shows the replacement of arachidonic acid with
mead acid in particular phospholipid species as cells are kept in
culture, this leading to marked changes in the overall eicosanoid
January 27, 2018 - Good things, they say, usually come in threes;
omne trium perfectum - everything that comes
in threes is perfect.
There is lies, damn lies and statistics, the three little pigs, the
bad, the good and the ugly... and there is also the education, the
science and the future.
January 23, 2018 - This year the trilling blackbirds have taken
longer than usual to make themselves noticed. Today, the first day
that their singing finally floods the dawn of the city, also come in
those who like to make
themselves noticed. Preserve your
memories, they're all that's left
January 19, 2018 - The flight of Icarus, in addition to being a
fine Iron Maiden song, is a great reminder that the wax of reality
may melt for so many reasons, and the floor is a very hard place to
fall. Recurring thoughts for the day.
January 16, 2018 - Directorial Quotation #40: "One of the
penalties for refusing to participate in politics is that you end up
being governed by your inferiors" (Plato, Greek philosopher).
January 15, 2018 - Our Paper of the Year
2017 was published in the Nov issue of Nature Medicine by
Arai and colleagues. The work describes a new pathway regulated
by PAF acetyl hydrolase that results in the generation of omega-3
fatty acid epoxides as new lipid mediators of mast cell-mediated
January 8, 2018 - "Don't try to be a great man, just be a man
and let history make its own judgment" (Zephram Cochrane, rocket
scientist. Also a Roy Orbison fan) Winter 2018 group meeting schedule
December 28, 2017 - Our latest palmitoleic paper (to appear
the JLR) ranks 23rd, out of 43 entries, in the
"Most-Read Articles during October thru November 2017" list. Not bad
considering that our paper was first published in the Papers in
Press section on Nov 21. With this exhilarating news we say goodbye
to this year and wait for the next one, which promises to begin in a
pretty hectic way.
December 20, 2017 - It has been suggested that titanium exposure
may be harmful to the brain, in particular to glial cells, which
include the astrocytes. Astrocytes are known as rich sources of
arachidonic acid and its oxygenated metabolites. Morale of the story: if your sixth sense says no, get to
December 19, 2017 - Directorial Quotation #39: "You never know
what is enough unless you know what is more than enough" (William
Blake, English poet).