Myriocin modulates the altered lipid metabolism and storage in cystic fibrosis

Paola Signorelli, Francesca Pivari, Matteo Barcella, Ivan Merelli, Aida Zulueta, Michele Dei Cas, Lorenzo Rosso, Riccardo Ghidoni, Anna Caretti, Rita Paroni, Alessandra Mingione

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Cystic fibrosis (CF) is a hereditary disease mostly related to ΔF508 CFTR mutation causing a proteinopathy that is characterized by multiple organ dysfunction, primarily lungs chronic inflammation, and infection. Defective autophagy and accumulation of the inflammatory lipid ceramide have been proposed as therapeutic targets. Accumulation of lipids and cholesterol was reported in the airways of CF patients, together with altered triglycerides and cholesterol levels in plasma, thus suggesting a disease-related dyslipidemia. Myriocin, an inhibitor of sphingolipids synthesis, significantly reduces inflammation and activates TFEB-induced response to stress, enhancing fatty acids oxidation and promoting autophagy. Myriocin ameliorates the response against microbial infection in CF models and patients' monocytes. Here we show that CF broncho-epithelial cells exhibit an altered distribution of intracellular lipids. We demonstrated that lipid accumulation is supported by an enhanced synthesis of fatty acids containing molecules and that Myriocin is able to reduce such accumulation. Moreover, Myriocin modulated the transcriptional profile of CF cells in order to restore autophagy, activate an anti-oxidative response, stimulate lipid metabolism and reduce lipid peroxidation. Moreover, lipid storage may be altered in CF cells, since we observed a reduced expression of lipid droplets related proteins named perilipin 3 and 5 and seipin. To note, Myriocin up-regulates the expression of genes that are involved in lipid droplets biosynthesis and maturation. We suggest that targeting sphingolipids de novo synthesis may counteract lipids accumulation by modulating CF altered transcriptional profile, thus restoring autophagy and lipid metabolism homeostasis.

Original languageEnglish
Article number109928
JournalCellular Signalling
Publication statusPublished - May 2021


  • Cystic fibrosis
  • Lipid droplet
  • Lipid metabolism
  • Myriocin
  • Sphingolipids

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cell Biology


Dive into the research topics of 'Myriocin modulates the altered lipid metabolism and storage in cystic fibrosis'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this