Lipid rafts and signal transduction

Nat Rev Mol Cell Biol. 2000 Oct;1(1):31-9. doi: 10.1038/35036052.


Signal transduction is initiated by complex protein-protein interactions between ligands, receptors and kinases, to name only a few. It is now becoming clear that lipid micro-environments on the cell surface -- known as lipid rafts -- also take part in this process. Lipid rafts containing a given set of proteins can change their size and composition in response to intra- or extracellular stimuli. This favours specific protein-protein interactions, resulting in the activation of signalling cascades.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Caveolae / metabolism
  • Cholesterol / metabolism
  • Endocytosis / physiology
  • Membrane Microdomains / chemistry
  • Membrane Microdomains / metabolism*
  • Models, Biological
  • Molecular Structure
  • Phospholipids / metabolism
  • Receptors, Cell Surface / metabolism
  • Signal Transduction / physiology*
  • Sphingolipids / metabolism


  • Phospholipids
  • Receptors, Cell Surface
  • Sphingolipids
  • Cholesterol