A Not-So-Ancient Grease History: Click Chemistry and Protein Lipid Modifications

Kiall F. Suazo, Keun Young Park, Mark D. Distefano

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Protein lipid modification involves the attachment of hydrophobic groups to proteins via ester, thioester, amide, or thioether linkages. In this review, the specific click chemical reactions that have been employed to study protein lipid modification and their use for specific labeling applications are first described. This is followed by an introduction to the different types of protein lipid modifications that occur in biology. Next, the roles of click chemistry in elucidating specific biological features including the identification of lipid-modified proteins, studies of their regulation, and their role in diseases are presented. A description of the use of protein-lipid modifying enzymes for specific labeling applications including protein immobilization, fluorescent labeling, nanostructure assembly, and the construction of protein-drug conjugates is presented next. Concluding remarks and future directions are presented in the final section.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalChemical Reviews
Early online dateApr 6 2021
StatePublished - Jun 23 2021

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported in part by the National Institute of Health grants RF1AG056976, R01GM084152, and R01NS107442. K.F.S. was supported by a Doctoral Dissertation Fellowship from the University of Minnesota.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021 American Chemical Society.


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