Alteration of glycerolipid and sphingolipid-derived second messenger kinetics in ras transformed 3T3 cells. Academic Article uri icon


  • The effect of ras transformation (rasB fibroblasts) on basal and serum-stimulated diacylglycerol (DAG) composition and mass was examined over time with respect to changes in membrane phospholipid composition and ceramide mass. RasB cells vs. nontransformed control cells (rasD and NR6) had chronically elevated DAG levels (up to 240 min) following serum stimulation, indicating a defect in the recovery phase of the intracellular DAG pulse. Ras transformation also had a dramatic effect on DAG composition. Molecular species analysis revealed that DAG from unstimulated rasB cells was enriched in the delta 9 desaturase fatty acyl species (monoenoate 18:1(n - 7) and 18:1(n - 9)), and depleted in arachidonic acid (20:4(n - 6)). With the exception of glycerophosphoinositol (GPI), DAG remodeling paralleled the compositional alterations in individual phospholipid classes. Importantly, ras transformation altered the fatty acyl composition of sphingomyelin, a precursor to the ceramide second messenger. With the addition of serum, control cells (rasD) had a progressive increase in ceramide mass with levels approximately 5-fold higher by 240 min. In contrast, ceramide levels did not increase in rasB cells at either 4 or 240 min. These results demonstrate that ras-oncogene, in addition to its effects on DAG metabolism, can also abolish the cellular increase in ceramide mass in response to serum stimulation. Since DAG and ceramide may have opposing biological functions, the prolonged elevation of DAG and the suppression of ceramide levels would be consistent with an enhanced proliferative capacity.

published proceedings

  • Biochim Biophys Acta

author list (cited authors)

  • Laurenz, J. C., Gunn, J. M., Jolly, C. A., & Chapkin, R. S.

citation count

  • 16

complete list of authors

  • Laurenz, JC||Gunn, JM||Jolly, CA||Chapkin, RS

publication date

  • January 1996