Phosphatidylglycerol is a naturally occurring phospholipid and a constituent of plant, animal, and bacterial cell membranes. It is usually in low abundance (1-2% of the total phospholipids), but it has many essential functions. In addition to being a membrane constituent, phosphatidylglycerol is a key intermediate in the biosynthesis of a number of other lipids but especially of cardiolipin, which is located in the inner mitochondrial membrane and is required for proper functioning of the enzymes involved in oxidative phosphorylation. Interestingly, phosphatidylglycerol also plays a role in the field of nucleic acid delivery. It has been shown that phosphatidylglycerol can activate RNA synthesis, which may be beneficial for mRNA delivery applications .
Structure of phosphatidylglycerol
Phosphatidylglycerol contains two acyl chains esterified to glycerol, which in turn is bound to a head group structure containing a net charge. Phosphatidylglycerol contains a phosphate in its head group and no other groups with compensating positive charges (the remaining structure is glycerol). Thus, phosphatidylglycerol is an anionic lipid at neutral pH, which brings a negative charge to the membrane surface and the lipid-protein interface. Due to hydration, it has a larger than expected head group and an overall cylindrical shape.
Figure 1. The chemical structure of phosphatidylglycerol.
Biosynthesis of phosphatidylglycerol
As the first step of the biosynthesis of phosphatidylglycerol, the primary precursor glycerol 3-phosphate is acylated to lysophosphatidic acid by glycerol 3-phosphate acyltransferase. This step is followed by a second acylation catalyzed by lysophosphatidic acid acyltransferase. The synthesized phosphatidic acid obtained by the two-step acylation of glycerol 3-phosphate is converted to CDP-diacylglycerol by CDP-diacylglycerol synthase and then to phosphatidylglycerol phosphate (PGP) by PGP synthase. The final step of phosphatidylglycerol biosynthesis is the dephosphorylation of PGP, a reaction which is catalyzed by PGP phosphatase.
Figure 2. Schematic diagram of the biosynthesis of phosphatidylglycerol.
What we offer
Alfa Chemistry supplies a wide range of phosphatidylglycerol products for companies researching vaccines. If you cannot find the product you need, please contact us. We also offer product customization according to customer's detailed requirements.
- Hirai, H.; et al. Reversal by phosphatidylglycerol and cardiolipin of inhibition of transcription and replication by histones in vitro. Arch. Biochem. Biophys. 1992, 298: 458-463.
Our products and services are for research use only and cannot be used for any clinical purposes.