Biology of secretory phospholipase A2

Boris B. Boyanovsky, Nancy R. Webb

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

95 Scopus citations


The secretory phospholipase A2 (sPLA2) family provides a seemingly endless array of potential biological functions that is only beginning to be appreciated. In humans, this family comprises 9 different members that vary in their tissue distribution, hydrolytic activity, and phospholipid substrate specificity. Through their lipase activity, these enzymes trigger various cell-signaling events to regulate cellular functions, directly kill bacteria, or modulate inflammatory responses. In addition, some sPLA 2's are high affinity ligands for cellular receptors. This review merely scratches the surface of some of the actions of sPLA2s in innate immunity, inflammation, and atherosclerosis. The goal is to provide an overview of recent findings involving sPLA2s and to point to potential pathophysiologic mechanisms that may become targets for therapy.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)61-72
Number of pages12
JournalCardiovascular Drugs and Therapy
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 2009


  • Atherosclerosis
  • Eicosanoid
  • Inflammation
  • Innate immunity
  • Lipoprotein

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
  • Pharmacology (medical)


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