Lipid chemistry of Sphingolipids in Food and Milk Products
Journal of Glycomics & Lipidomics

Journal of Glycomics & Lipidomics
Open Access

ISSN: 2153-0637

Short Communication - (2022)Volume 11, Issue 4

Lipid chemistry of Sphingolipids in Food and Milk Products

Christiana Jennifer*
*Correspondence: Christiana Jennifer, Department of Biomedical Sciences, University of Modena and Reggio Emilia, Modena, Italy, Email:

Author info »


The aliphatic amino alcohol sphingosine is the source of the lipid class known as sphingolipids. Sphingolipids are divided into three main categories: phosphosphingolipids (sphingomyelins), glycosphingolipids, and ceramides. Sphingolipids are abundant in neural tissue and are essential for cell recognition and signal transmission. A second type of lipid sphingolipids, is found in cell membranes, particularly those of nerve cells and brain tissues. They don't have glycerol in them, but they still have the two alcohols and an amine in the middle. There are three parts to sphingosine: a three-carbon chain with two alcohols and an amine attached, as well as a long hydrocarbon chain. The base sphingosine of sphingomyelin is linked to a number of other groups. A fatty acid forms an amide bond with the amine. A phosphate ester bond binds phosphate to choline, and another phosphate ester bond binds phosphate to phosphate. Gray and white regions made up the human brain and spinal cord. The myelin sheath, a white lipid coating that protects nerve axons and facilitates the rapid transmission of electrical signals, forms the white region. Myelin sheath degeneration leads to multiple sclerosis [1].

Types of sphingolipids

Ceramides: Sphingolipids in their simplest form are ceramids. They are consist a fatty acid chain linked to sphingosine by an amide linkage. Ceramides, also known as N-acyl-sphingoid bases, are a major class of derivatives of sphingoid bases that contain an amide-linked fatty acid. The chain lengths of the fatty acids range from 14 to 26 carbon atoms, and they are typically saturated or mono-unsaturated.

Sphingomyelins: Sphingomyelins (ceramide phosphocholines) make up the majority of mammals' phosphosphingolipids, while phytoceramidephosphoinositols and mannose-containing headgroups are found in fungi and ceramide phosphoethanolamines in insects. A phosphorylcholine or phosphoroethanolamine molecule is esterified to a ceramide's 1- hydroxy group in sphingomyelins.

Glycosphingolipids: Glycosphingolipids are a diverse class of molecules that are made up of sugar residues linked to the sphingoid base by a glycosidic bond. The simple and complex glycosphingolipids, such as cerebrosides and gangliosides, are examples of these. Ceramides with one or more sugar residues joined in a glycosidic linkage at the 1-hydroxyl position are known as glycosphingolipids. Cerebrosides and gangliosides are two further subcategories of glycosphingolipids. Gangliosides contain at least three sugars, one of which must be sialic acid, while cerebrosides only contain one glucose or galactose at the 1- hydroxy position [2,3].

One of the most important sources of sphingolipids is milk and dairy products, which account for a third of the total amount of calories, consumed each day. Sphingolipids are not the same as "ordinary fats." Because they are effective even at low concentrations and perform both structural and regulatory functions, they are better referred to as "functional ingredients." Sphingolipids are found in the majority of foods, but there is no evidence that eating enough of them is necessary for growth or survival. However, the digestion products of complex sphingolipids—ceramides and sphingosines—as well as the complex sphingolipids themselves are highly bioactive compounds with significant effects on cell regulation [4].

The absolute percentage of fat in milk varies depending on a number of factors, including the species, the diet of the mother, and the stage of lactation. Mammalian milk fat contains a wide range of lipids, varying in quantity and composition. The Milk Fat Globule Membrane (MFGM) is a biological membrane that surrounds milk fat globules, which are spherical entities of about 4 to 5 micrometers in diameter that contain lipids. The fat globule is protected from enzymatic degradation by lipases and stabilized in the milk's continuous phase by this highly complex biological membrane.


Sphingolipids play a variety of biological roles and are abundant in the Central Nervous System (CNS). They are toxins receptors and important in tissue development, cell recognition, and adhesion. Membranes of both plant and animal cells contain sphingolipids. Cells use sphingosine, which can be made from serine and palmitoyl-CoA, to make ceramides. The union of a very long-chain fatty acid with sphingosine results in the formation of ceramides, which are the fundamental structural components of all sphingolipids. Sphingolipids are made in the ER1 and Golgi, but they are more abundant in endosomes and the plasma membrane, where they perform many of their functions. so that they can move between organelles and change. In the cytosol, transport occurs through vesicles and monomeric transport. Sphingolipids only make up 20-35 molar of plasma membrane lipids, but they are virtually absent in mitochondria.


Author Info

Christiana Jennifer*
Department of Biomedical Sciences, University of Modena and Reggio Emilia, Modena, Italy

Citation: Jennifer C (2022) Lipid chemistry of Sphingolipids in Food and Milk Products. J Glycomics Lipidomics. 11:323.

Received: 29-Nov-2022, Manuscript No. JGL-23-21503; Editor assigned: 01-Dec-2022, Pre QC No. JGL-23-21503 (PQ); Reviewed: 15-Dec-2022, QC No. JGL-23-21503; Revised: 22-Dec-2022, Manuscript No. JGL-23-21503 (R); Published: 29-Dec-2022 , DOI: 10.35248/2153-0637.22.11.323

Copyright: © 2022 Jennifer C. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.