Sterol regulatory element binding proteins (SREBPs) function as transcription factors that activate specific genes involved in cholesterol synthesis, endocytosis of low density lipoproteins, the synthesis of both saturated and unsaturated fatty acids and glucose metabolism. As such, these proteins provide a link between lipid and carbohydrate metabolism. There are three SREBPs, SREBP-1a, SREBP-1c and SREBP-2, that are encoded by two genes. SREBPs are synthesized as 125 kDa precursor proteins that are localized to the endoplasmic reticulum. The precursor is transported to the Golgi by a chaperone protein (SREBP-cleavage activating protein) and then cleaved by two proteases to release the mature, transcriptionally active 68 kDa amino terminal domain. Recent studies have shown that formation of mature SREBP is controlled at multiple levels in response to changes in the levels of oxysterols, insulin/glucose and polyunsaturated fatty acids. These recent findings have important clinical implications relevant to hyperlipidemia and diabetes and are the topic of this review.