Sphingolipids in colon cancer

Mónica García-Barros, Nicolas Coant, Jean Philip Truman, Ashley J. Snider, Yusuf A. Hannun

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

79 Scopus citations


Colorectal cancer is one of the major causes of death in the western world. Despite increasing knowledge of the molecular signaling pathways implicated in colon cancer, therapeutic outcomes are still only moderately successful. Sphingolipids, a family of N-acyl linked lipids, have not only structural functions but are also implicated in important biological functions. Ceramide, sphingosine and sphingosine-1-phosphate are the most important bioactive lipids, and they regulate several key cellular functions. Accumulating evidence suggests that many cancers present alterations in sphingolipids and their metabolizing enzymes. The aim of this review is to discuss the emerging roles of sphingolipids, both endogenous and dietary, in colon cancer and the interaction of sphingolipids with WNT/β-catenin pathway, one of the most important signaling cascades that regulate development and homeostasis in intestine. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled New Frontiers in Sphingolipid Biology.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)773-782
Number of pages10
JournalBiochimica et Biophysica Acta - Molecular and Cell Biology of Lipids
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • Ceramide
  • Colorectal cancer
  • Dietary
  • Sphingolipids
  • Sphingosine
  • Sphingosine-1-phosphate

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology


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