Pharmacological and metabolic significance of bile acids in retinal diseases

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Bile acids (BAs) are amphipathic sterols primarily synthesized from cholesterol in the liver and released in the intestinal lumen upon food intake. BAs play important roles in micellination of dietary lipids, stimulating bile flow, promoting biliary phospholipid secretion, and regulating cholesterol synthesis and elimination. Emerging evidence, however, suggests that, aside from their conventional biological function, BAs are also important signaling molecules and therapeutic tools. In the last decade, the therapeutic applications of BAs in the treatment of ocular diseases have gained great interest. Despite the identification of BA synthesis, metabolism, and recycling in ocular tissues, much remains unknown with regards to their biological significance in the eye. Additionally, as gut microbiota directly affects the quality of circulating BAs, their analysis could derive important in-formation on changes occurring in this microenvironment. This review aims at providing an overview of BA metabolism and biological function with a focus on their potential therapeutic and di-agnostic use for retinal diseases.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number292
Pages (from-to)1-18
Number of pages18
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 2021


  • Bile acids
  • Gut microbiota
  • Ocular diseases
  • UDCA

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology


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