Purpose of review: The regulatory lipids are a class of bioactive lipids which regulate various important biological processes. Profiling these regulatory lipids is an attractive method to understand the role of these metabolites. This is especially true because most of these regulatory lipids are derived from several important pharmacological targets: cyclooxygenase, lipoxygenase, and cytochrome P450 enzymes. This review highlights the development of methods to profile these regulatory lipids and the recent publications employing these profiling methods.
Recent findings: The recent development of methods for the profiling of regulatory lipids target two different directions: to expand coverage for discovery studies (fingerprinting) and to make the quantitative method more accurate, sensitive, and faster for diagnostic or more detailed studies. Recent applications of these profiling methods including assessment of in-vivo drug engagement, pathways crosstalk, and possible mechanisms for side-effects of a withdrawn anti-inflammatory drug rofecoxib are also reviewed here.
Summary: The profiling of regulatory lipids is a useful tool for many investigations. The breadth of coverage, throughput limits with detection, and reproducibility of quantitation are being improved. The resulting data will assist with fundamental investigation, disease biomarker discovery, drug discovery, and drug development.