Metabolites of sphingomyelin, as well as calcium ion fluxes, have a profound role in cellular signaling in almost all cell types. In addition, metabolites of sphingomyelin often modulate calcium signaling, either directly or indirectly. This is an interesting aspect on how lipids may wield their physiological role, as calcium is probably one of the most versatile signaling molecules in the cell, and as modulation of calcium signaling has profound effects on cellular physiology. The aim of this review is to discuss the mechanisms by which metabolites of sphingomyelin, especially the sphingolipids sphingosine and sphingosine 1-phosphate (S1P), modulate calcium fluxes, and how this may affect cellular function. In addition, the pathological aspects of sphingolipid-evoked modulation of calcium fluxes will be discussed.
- Signaling: receptors
- Sphingosine 1-phosphate