The physics of lipid droplet nucleation, growth and budding
- Thiam, Abdou Rachid and Foret, LionelBIOCHIMICA ET BIOPHYSICA ACTA-MOLECULAR AND CELL BIOLOGY OF LIPIDS 1861
, 715-722 (2016)
Abstract : Lipid droplets (Ws) are intracellular oil-in-water emulsion droplets,
covered by a phospholipid monolayer and mainly present in the cytosol.
Despite their important role in cellular metabolism and growing number
of newly identified functions, LD formation mechanism from the
endoplasmic reticulum remains poorly understood. To form a LD, the oil
molecules synthesized in the ER accumulate between the monolayer
leaflets and induce deformation of the membrane. This formation process
works through three steps: nucleation, growth and budding, exactly as in
phase separation and dewetting phenomena. These steps involve sequential
biophysical membrane remodeling mechanisms for which we present basic
tools of statistical physics, membrane biophysics, and soft matter
science underlying them. We aim to highlight relevant factors that could
control LD formation size, site and number through this physics
description. An emphasis will be given to a currently underestimated
contribution of the molecular interactions between lipids to favor an
energetically costless mechanism of LD formation. (C) 2016 Elsevier B.V.
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