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A lipokine is a lipid-controlling hormone. The term was coined by Hotamisligil Lab in 2008 to classify fatty acids which modulate lipid metabolism by what he called a "chaperone effect".[1]

The lipokine palmitoleic acid (C16:1n7-palmitoleate) travels to the muscles and liver, where it improves cell sensitivity to insulin and blocks fat accumulation in the liver. In addition, researchers observed that palmitoleate suppresses inflammation, which is considered by many to be a primary factor leading to metabolic disease.

Palmitoleic acid also serves as a biomarker for metabolic status. More specifically, a low concentration in the free acid component of the serum indicates a risk of metabolic disease, and that de novo lipogenesis should be stimulated. Additionally, administering palmitoleic acid to a subject (via nutraceutical or other means), positively impacts lipid metabolism.[1]

FAHFAs (fatty acid esters of hydroxy fatty acids) are lipokines formed in adipose tissue. FAHFAs improve glucose tolerance and also reduce adipose tissue inflammation. Palmitic acid esters of hydroxy-stearic acids (PAHSAs) are among the most bioactive members able to activate G-protein coupled receptors 120.[2] Docosahexaenoic acid ester of hydroxy-linoleic acid (DHAHLA) exert anti-inflammatory and pro-resolving properties.[3]


  1. ^ a b Haiming Cao; Kristin Gerhold; Jared R. Mayers; Michelle M. Wiest; Steve M. Watkins; and Gökhan S. Hotamisligil (2008). "Identification of a Lipokine, a Lipid Hormone Linking Adipose Tissue to Systemic Metabolism". Cell. 134 (6): 933–944. doi:10.1016/j.cell.2008.07.048. PMC 2728618. PMID 18805087.
  2. ^ Yore, MM; Syed, I; Moraes-Vieira, PM; Zhang, T; Herman, MA; Homan, EA; Patel, RT; Lee, J; Chen, S; Peroni, OD; Dhaneshwar, AS; Hammarstedt, A; Smith, U; McGraw, TE; Saghatelian, A; Kahn, BB (Oct 2014). "Discovery of a class of endogenous mammalian lipids with anti-diabetic and anti-inflammatory effects". Cell. 159 (2): 318–32. doi:10.1016/j.cell.2014.09.035. PMC 4260972. PMID 25303528.
  3. ^ Kuda, O; Brezinova, M; Rombaldova, M; Slavikova, B; Posta, M; Beier, P; Janovska, P; Veleba, J; Kopecky, J Jr; Kudova, E; Pelikanova, T; Kopecky, J (2016). "Docosahexaenoic acid-derived fatty acid esters of hydroxy fatty acids (FAHFAs) with anti-inflammatory properties". Diabetes. 65 (9): 2580–2590. doi:10.2337/db16-0385. PMID 27313314.