World’s first map of human brain lipids created

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Scientists have found that 93% of the lipids in brain tissue are distributed differently in the white and gray matter, the subcortex, the visual and motor cortices, and the prefrontal cortex, which is responsible for decision-making, social behavior, and other functions.

Skolkovo Institute of Science and TechnologyJul 10 2024 Abnormalities in the brain lipidome tend to occur in mental and cognitive disorders, so mapping these molecules should help gain more information about the disease. The research supported by a grant from the Presidential Program of the Russian Science Foundation was published in Nature Communications.

The researchers found a total of 419 different lipids, most of them unevenly distributed among the different parts of the human brain. For example, the subcortex , motor and visual cortices had relatively high levels of cholesterol, while the prefrontal cortex responsible for complex social behavior and decision-making had relatively low levels of this lipid.

Related StoriesPolyunsaturated fatty acid lipids prevailed in the gray matter which contains a concentration of cell bodies rather than axons and virtually no myelin. This suggests that such molecules may be important for signal processing in cells.


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