CD36, a Scavenger Receptor Involved in Immunity, Metabolism, Angiogenesis, and Behavior

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Sci. Signal.  26 May 2009:
Vol. 2, Issue 72, pp. re3
DOI: 10.1126/scisignal.272re3

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CD36 is a multifunctional cell-surface receptor present on many cell types, including platelets, mononuclear phagocytes, and muscle, fat, and gut cells. It is conserved in mammals, and there are many invertebrate orthologs. CD36 binds to several major classes of ligands, including the matrix protein thrombospondin, long-chain fatty acids, and oxidized phospholipids and lipoproteins; in different contexts, it serves to regulate angiogenesis, innate immune responses, fatty acid metabolism, and sensory responses to fatty acids. CD36 signaling is mediated by activation of specific intracellular pathways that may include kinases of the Src family and mitogen-activated protein kinases. Because of the importance of CD36 signaling in human diseases, including atherosclerosis, thrombosis, Alzheimer’s disease, obesity, diabetes, and cancer, these signaling pathways are under intense scrutiny. This Review includes two figures and 123 citations.