Special Issue: Systemic and Cellular Metabolism and Disease

Special Issue: Systemic and Cellular Metabolism and Disease

Our newest Special Issue showcases a diverse range of expert Review Articles and Viewpoints focused on the fast-moving field of Systemic and Cellular Metabolism and Disease. Any physiological or functional change that occurs in a cell is accompanied by alterations in its metabolism; it is through such alterations that any modification of cellular phenotype happens. This fact underlines the important role of metabolism in physiology and disease and emphasises the significance of the study of metabolic pathways with the aim to develop novel therapeutic approaches for pathologic conditions. In this introductory Editorial, The FEBS Journal Editorial Board Member Colin Adrain provides a comprehensive summary of the content of the reviews included in the Special Issue, highlighting the involvement of metabolic pathways in tissue physiology, immunity and pathology, as well as the potential development of therapeutic approaches based on metabolic signalling molecules and pathways.  We encourage you to refer to the Editorial for an overview of the issue.

The articles included in this issue emphasise the role of metabolites as signalling mediators, metabolic disease, immunity, organelle function and dysfunction, ageing and neurodegenerative disease as well as how metabolic processes can be targeted for therapeutic approaches in disease.

We hope that experts and newcomers to the field alike will find the review content presented here timely and exciting. Many thanks to all the authors for their remarkable contributions to this Special Issue on Systemic and Cellular Metabolism and Disease.

On the cover: High magnification micrograph of brown adipocytes, which store fat as small lipid droplets. Image obtained from Shutterstock (ID: 267094181) with credit to Jose Luis Calvo.


  1. Adrain C, (2021) Systemic and cellular metabolism: the cause of and remedy for disease? FEBS J 288, 3624-3627.
  2. Maurer S, Harms M & Boucher J (2020) The colorful versatility of adipocytes: white-to-brown transdifferentiation and its therapeutic potential in humans. FEBS J 288, 3628–3646.
  3. Wang Z, Wang QA, Liu Y & Jiang L (2021) Energy metabolism in brown adipose tissue. FEBS J 288, 3647– 3662.
  4. Chen C, Zhang X, Deng Y, Cui Q, Zhu J, Ren H, Liu Y, Hu X, Zuo J & Peng Y (2021) Regulatory roles of circRNAs in adipogenesis and lipid metabolism: emerging insights into lipid-related diseases. FEBS J 288, 3663–3682.
  5. Vanderkruk B & Hoffman BG (2021) Metabolism as a central regulator of b-cell chromatin state. FEBS J 288, 3683–3693.
  6. Kieler M, Hofmann M & Schabbauer G (2021) More than just protein building blocks: how amino acids and related metabolic pathways fuel macrophage polarization. FEBS J 288, 3694–3714.
  7. Ebrahimi KH, Gilbert-Jaramillo J, James WS & McCullagh JS (2020) Interferon-stimulated gene products as regulators of central carbon metabolism. FEBS J 288, 3715–3726.
  8. Wang Y, Yutuc E & Griffiths WJ (2021) Cholesterol metabolism pathways – are the intermediates more important than the products? FEBS J 288, 3727–3745.
  9. Rodríguez C, Muñoz M, Contreras C & Prieto D (2021) AMPK, metabolism, and vascular function. FEBS J 288, 3746–3771.
  10. Zhang H, Ma J, Tang K & Huang B (2020) Beyond energy storage: roles of glycogen metabolism in health and disease. FEBS J 288, 3772–3783.
  11. Kading J, Finck BN & DeBosch BJ (2021) Targeting hepatocyte carbohydrate transport to mimic fasting and calorie restriction. FEBS J 288, 3784–3798.
  12. Villar PS, Vergara C & Bacigalupo J (2021) Energy sources that fuel metabolic processes in protruding finger-like organelles. FEBS J 288, 3799–3812.
  13. Huber K, Mestres-Arenas A, Fajas L & Leal-Esteban LC (2020) The multifaceted role of cell cycle regulators in the coordination of growth and metabolism. FEBS J 288, 3813–3833.
  14. Cavinato M, Madreiter-Sokolowski CT, Büttner S, Schosserer M, Zwerschke W, Wedel S, Grillari J, Graier WF & Jansen-Dürr P (2021) Targeting cellular senescence based on interorganelle communication, multilevel proteostasis, and metabolic control. FEBS J 288, 3834–3854.
  15. Suresh J, Khor IW, Kaur P, Heng HL, Torta F, Dawe GS, Tai ES & Tolwinski NS (2021) Shared signaling pathways in Alzheimer’s and metabolic disease may point to new treatment approaches. FEBS J 288, 3855– 3873.