Introduction

Lipidomics is system level scale analysis of lipids and their interactions. Genes encode proteins that collectively, and together with environmental factors, lead to the metabolite inventory of a cell, tissue or body fluid. Novel approaches now allow for qualitative and quantitative measurements at each level on global scales (genomics, proteomics and metabolomics).

The critical role of lipids in cell, tissue and organ physiology is demonstrated by a large number of genetic studies and by many human diseases involving the disruption of lipid metabolic enzymes and pathways. Examples of such diseases include cancer, diabetes, neurodegenerative disorder and infectious diseases.

So far, the explosion of information in the fields of genomics and proteomics has not been matched by a corresponding advancement of knowledge in the field of lipids. This is largely due to the complexity of lipids and the lack of powerful tools for their analysis. Novel analytical approaches now allow for systems level analysis of lipids and their interacting partners (lipidomics).