Announcing the Lipid Droplet Knowledge Portal

Today we release a new member of the Knowledge Portal Network: the Lipid Droplet Knowledge Portal (LD-Portal; Based on research by Robert Farese, Tobias Walther, and colleagues, the LD-Portal focuses on the biology of lipid droplets--organelles that mediate cellular energy and membrane metabolism and are implicated in multiple diseases, including type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and more. Datasets aggregated in the LD-Portal include genome-wide RNA expression in human macrophages and its response to lipid loading, lipid droplet proteomic data from human cells and mice fed normal or high-fat diets, and the results of a high-content imaging-based genome perturbation screen. These studies, as well as the LD-Portal itself, are described in detail in a manuscript submitted for publication (Mejhert N, Gabriel KR, et al., 2021; bioRxiv preprint).

The Gene page (see below) is a core page of the LD-Portal, displaying all of the data types described above. This page also displays gene-level genetic associations from the Common Metabolic Diseases Knowledge Portal (CMDKP), calculated using the MAGMA algorithm, and links to Gene pages within the Type 2 Diabetes and Cardiovascular Disease Knowledge Portals.

Features of the LD-Portal Gene page (Figure from Mejhert N, Gabriel KR, et al., 2021).


In addition to the information on the Gene page, the LD-Portal includes the Gene Finder tool that allows you to retrieve genes meeting multiple custom criteria, including several parameters of the lipid droplets observed after gene silencing and gene-level association scores for specific phenotypes. Downloads of all the underlying data are also available.

The LD-Portal is part of a new effort from the Knowledge Portal team to create "Research Portals" in collaboration with biomedical researchers to facilitate rapid data sharing. These portals are smaller in content than the genetic association-based Knowledge Portals such as the CMDKP, include a wider variety of data types, and often accompany a publication or manuscript. The first Research Portal to be created was the APOL1 Portal, providing data on APOL1-associated kidney disease. All of the Knowledge Portal Network portals are listed on and linked from this page.

We are working to develop semi-automated processes that will make it easy for researchers to upload their data and initiate the creation of new Research Portals. If you are interested in creating a Portal to showcase your research, please contact us!

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