The Lipid Messenger OEA Links Dietary Fat Intake to Satiety

Gary J. Schwartz, Jin Fu, Giuseppe Astarita, Xiaosong Li, Silvana Gaetani, Patrizia Campolongo, Vincenzo Cuomo, Daniele Piomelli

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

244 Scopus citations


The association between fat consumption and obesity underscores the need to identify physiological signals that control fat intake. Previous studies have shown that feeding stimulates small-intestinal mucosal cells to produce the lipid messenger oleoylethanolamide (OEA) which, when administered as a drug, decreases meal frequency by engaging peroxisome proliferator-activated receptors-α (PPAR-α). Here, we report that duodenal infusion of fat stimulates OEA mobilization in the proximal small intestine, whereas infusion of protein or carbohydrate does not. OEA production utilizes dietary oleic acid as a substrate and is disrupted in mutant mice lacking the membrane fatty-acid transporter CD36. Targeted disruption of CD36 or PPAR-α abrogates the satiety response induced by fat. The results suggest that activation of small-intestinal OEA mobilization, enabled by CD36-mediated uptake of dietary oleic acid, serves as a molecular sensor linking fat ingestion to satiety.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)281-288
Number of pages8
JournalCell metabolism
Issue number4
StatePublished - Oct 8 2008



ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology

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    Schwartz, G. J., Fu, J., Astarita, G., Li, X., Gaetani, S., Campolongo, P., Cuomo, V., & Piomelli, D. (2008). The Lipid Messenger OEA Links Dietary Fat Intake to Satiety. Cell metabolism, 8(4), 281-288.