The uptake and metabolism of long chain fatty acids (LCFA) are critical to many physiological and cellular processes. Aberrant accumulation or depletion of LCFA underlie the pathology of numerous metabolic diseases. Protein-mediated transport of LCFA has been proposed as the major mode of LCFA uptake and activation. Several proteins have been identified to be involved in LCFA uptake. This review focuses on the SLC27 family of fatty acid transport proteins, also known as FATPs, with an emphasis on the gain- and loss-of-function animal models that elucidate the functions of FATPs in vivo and how these transport proteins play a role in physiological and pathological situations.
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