The actions and metabolism of lysophosphatidylinositol, an endogenous agonist for GPR55

Prostaglandins Other Lipid Mediat. 2013 Dec;107:103-16. doi: 10.1016/j.prostaglandins.2013.05.004. Epub 2013 May 25.


Lysophosphatidylinositol (LPI) is a subspecies of lysophospholipid and is assumed to be not only a degradation product of phosphatidylinositol (PI), but also a bioactive lysophospholipid mediator. However, not much attention has been directed toward LPI compared to lysophosphatidic acid (LPA), since the receptor for LPI has not been identified. During screening for an agonist for the orphan G protein coupled receptor GPR55, we identified LPI, 2-arachidonoyl LPI in particular, as an agonist for GPR55. Our efforts to identify an LPI receptor facilitated research on LPI as a lipid messenger. In addition, we also found that DDHD1, previously identified as phosphatidic acid-preferring phospholipase A1, was one of the synthesizing enzymes of 2-arachidonoyl LPI. Here, we summarized the background for discovering the LPI receptor, and the actions/metabolism of LPI. We also referred to the biosynthesis of PI, a 1-stearoyl-2-arachidonoyl species, since the molecule is the precursor of 2-arachidonoyl LPI. Furthermore, we discussed physiological and/or pathophysiological processes involving LPI and GPR55, including the relevance of LPI-GPR55 and cannabinoids, since GPR55 was previously postulated to be another cannabinoid receptor. Although there is no doubt that GPR55 is the LPI receptor, we should re-consider whether or not GPR55 is in fact another cannabinoid receptor.

Keywords: Acyltransferase; Arachidonic acid; CoA; DAG; FFA; Fatty acid remodeling; GP; GPI; GPR55; LPA; LPC; LPE; LPI; Lysophosphatidylinositol; MAG; PAF; PI; PS; Phosphatidylinositol; Phospholipase A1; Phospholipase A2; Steraric acid; coenzyme A; diacylglycerol; free fatty acids; glycerophosphate; glycerophosphoinositol; lysoPS; lysophosphatidic acid; lysophosphatidylcholine; lysophosphatidylethanolamine; lysophosphatidylinositol; lysophosphatidylserine; monoacylglycerol; phosphatidylinositol; phosphatidylserine; platelet-activating factor.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Acetyltransferases / metabolism
  • Animals
  • Biosynthetic Pathways
  • Endocannabinoids / physiology
  • Humans
  • Lipid Metabolism
  • Lysophospholipids / physiology*
  • Receptor, Cannabinoid, CB1 / metabolism
  • Receptor, Cannabinoid, CB2 / metabolism
  • Receptors, Cannabinoid
  • Receptors, G-Protein-Coupled / agonists
  • Receptors, G-Protein-Coupled / metabolism*
  • Signal Transduction


  • Endocannabinoids
  • GPR55 protein, human
  • Lysophospholipids
  • Receptor, Cannabinoid, CB1
  • Receptor, Cannabinoid, CB2
  • Receptors, Cannabinoid
  • Receptors, G-Protein-Coupled
  • lysophosphatidylinositol
  • Acetyltransferases