Immunometabolism; cellular metabolism turns immune regulator [Metabolism]

November 3rd, 2015 by Loftus, R. M., Finlay, D. K.

Immune cells are highly dynamic in terms of their growth, proliferation and effector functions as they respond to immunological challenges. Different immune cells can adopt distinct metabolic configurations that allow the cell to balance its requirements for energy, molecular biosynthesis and longevity. However, in addition to facilitating immune cell responses, it is now becoming clear that cellular metabolism has direct roles in regulating immune cell function. This review article describes the distinct metabolic signatures of key immune cells, explains how these metabolic setups facilitate immune function and discusses the emerging evidence that intracellular metabolism has an integral role in controlling immune responses.