Overconsumption of lipid-rich diets, in conjunction with physical inactivity, disables and kills staggering numbers of people worldwide. Recent advances in our molecular understanding of cholesterol and triglyceride transport from the small intestine to the rest of the body provide a detailed picture of the fed/fasted and active/sedentary states. Key surprises include the unexpected nature of many pivotal molecular mediators, as well as their dysregulation — but possible reversibility — in obesity, diabetes, inactivity, and related conditions. These mechanistic insights provide new opportunities to correct dyslipoproteinemia, accelerated atherosclerosis, insulin resistance, and other deadly sequelae of overnutrition and underexertion.
Kevin Jon Williams
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