Endothelial cell (EC) CD36 controls tissue fatty acid (FA) uptake. Here we examine how ECs transfer FAs. FA interaction with apical membrane CD36 induces Src phosphorylation of caveolin-1 tyrosine-14 (Cav-1Y14) and ceramide generation in caveolae. Ensuing fission of caveolae yields vesicles containing FAs, CD36 and ceramide that are secreted basolaterally as small (80–100 nm) exosome-like extracellular vesicles (sEVs). We visualize in transwells EC transfer of FAs in sEVs to underlying myotubes. In mice with EC-expression of the exosome marker emeraldGFP-CD63, muscle fibers accumulate circulating FAs in emGFP-labeled puncta. The FA-sEV pathway is mapped through its suppression by CD36 depletion, blocking actin-remodeling, Src inhibition, Cav-1Y14 mutation, and neutral sphingomyelinase 2 inhibition. Suppression of sEV formation in mice reduces muscle FA uptake, raises circulating FAs, which remain in blood vessels, and lowers glucose, mimicking prominent Cd36 −/− mice phenotypes. The findings show that FA uptake influences membrane ceramide, endocytosis, and EC communication with parenchymal cells.

Original languageEnglish
Article number4029
JournalNature communications
Issue number1
StatePublished - Dec 2023


Dive into the research topics of 'Endothelial cell CD36 regulates membrane ceramide formation, exosome fatty acid transfer and circulating fatty acid levels'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this