From sheep to mice to cells: Tools for the study of the sphingolipidoses

Hila Zigdon, Anna Meshcheriakova, Anthony H. Futerman

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


The sphingolipidoses are a group of inherited lysosomal storage diseases in which sphingolipids accumulate due to the defective activity of one or other enzymes involved in their degradation. For most of the sphingolipidoses, little is known about the molecular mechanisms that lead to disease, which has negatively impacted attempts to develop therapies for these devastating human diseases. Use of both genetically-modified animals, ranging from mice to larger mammals, and of novel cell culture systems, is of utmost importance in delineating the molecular mechanisms that cause pathophysiology, and in providing tools that enable testing the efficacy of new therapies. In this review, we discuss eight sphingolipidoses, namely Gaucher disease, Fabry disease, metachromatic leukodystrophy, Krabbe disease, Niemann-Pick diseases A and B, Farber disease, GM1 gangliosidoses, and GM2 gangliosidoses, and describe the tools that are currently available for their study. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled Tools to study lipid functions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1189-1199
Number of pages11
JournalBiochimica et Biophysica Acta - Molecular and Cell Biology of Lipids
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 2014

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology


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