Do lipids shape the eukaryotic cell cycle?

19 Mar 2019

Successful passage through the cell cycle presents a number of structural challenges to the cell. Inceptive studies carried out in the last five years have produced clear evidence of modulations in the lipid profile (sometimes referred to as the lipidome) of eukaryotes as a function of the cell cycle. This mounting body of evidence indicates that lipids play key roles in the structural transformations seen across the cycle. The accumulation of this evidence coincides with a revolution in our understanding of how lipid composition regulates a plethora of biological processes ranging from protein activity through to cellular signalling and membrane compartmentalisation. In this review, we discuss evidence from biological, chemical and physical studies of the lipid fraction across the cell cycle that demonstrate that lipids are well-developed cellular components at the heart of the biological machinery responsible for managing progress through the cell cycle. Furthermore, we discuss the mechanisms by which this careful control is exercised.