Phosphatidate Phosphatase-1 is Functionally Conserved in Lipid Synthesis and Storage from Human to Yeast


Phosphatidate phosphatase-1 (PAP1) enzymes (yeast Pah1p/Smp2p, mammalian lipin1-3) have a key role in lipid homeostasis by controlling the relative proportions of its substrate phosphatidate (PA) and its product diacylglycerol (DAG). Recent investigation shows that mammalian lipin-1 complements phenotypes exhibited by yeast pah1Δ mutant cells, which indicates the functions of PAP1 enzymes are evolutionarily conserved. The observation was confirmed after transformation of human LPIN1 into PAH1-defective yeast, which resulted in human LPIN1-induced accumulation of triacylglycerol (TAG) and lipid droplet formation. In double mutants lacking Tgl3p and Tgl4p, overexpression of PAH1 or LPIN1-induced TAG accumulation and excessive obesity. Furthermore, the obese yeast was used as a model to study the anti-obesity effects of PAP1 activity inhibitors, including propranolol and clenbuterol. The data showed that the inhibitors significantly suppressed TAG accumulation and lipid droplets formation. These findings demonstrate that LPIN1 plays a functional role in lipid synthesis and storage, a role which is highly conserved from human to yeast. Inhibition of TAG synthesis will become an efficacious treatment strategy for obesity and our excessive obesity model will provide a very useful tool for discovery of new anti-obesity drugs in the future.



Adipose triglyceride lipase




Differential interference contrast microscopy


Hormone-sensitive lipase




Phosphatidate phosphatase




Thin-layer chromatography


Wild type


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We thank Dr. Ophry Pines and Orly Elpeleg for their kind gift of plasmid YEp-LPIN1. We are grateful to Dr. Deeksha Vishwamitra for her kind assistance in language proofing. This work was sponsored by grants from National Natural Science Foundation of China (31100549), the Scientific Research Foundation for the Returned Overseas Chinese Scholars, State Education Ministry and Fundamental Research Funds for the Central Universities (2232014A3-03 and 222201313010), the National Special Fund for State Key Laboratory of Bioreactor Engineering (2060204).

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Correspondence to Ping Shi or Zhiwei Huang.

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Fang, Z., Wang, S., Du, X. et al. Phosphatidate Phosphatase-1 is Functionally Conserved in Lipid Synthesis and Storage from Human to Yeast. BIOLOGIA FUTURA 65, 481–492 (2014).

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  • Phosphatidate phosphatase
  • triacylglycerol
  • PAH1
  • LPIN1
  • obesity yeast model