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Related to Cerebrosides: sphingosine, Glycolipids, Gangliosides
The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.



any one of a number of natural organic compounds of the complex lipid group.

Cerebrosides were first discovered in the brain (hence, their name). Their molecules are formed from residues of the amino alcohol sphingosine, a fatty acid, and a carbohydrate (galactose and, less frequently, glucose). Saturated, unsaturated, and hydroxy acids with 24 carbon atoms in the chain are most frequently found as the fatty-acid components of cerebrosides.

Cerebrosides are found mainly in nerve tissue, especially in the myelin sheath of nerve fibers. They also occur in the spleen, lungs, and other organs. Gaucher’s disease (named for the French physician P. C. E. Gaucher, who first described the disease in 1882) is caused by dysfunctions of cerebroside metabolism, which are accompanied by the accumulation of cerebrosides in cells of the reticuloendothelial system. In persons afflicted with Gaucher’s disease, 6–8 percent of the dry weight of the liver and spleen consist of cerebrosides containing a glucose residue instead of galactose.

The synthesis of cerebrosides was accomplished in 1961 from derivatives of sphingoside bases and acetobromohexose.


Khimiia uglevodov. Moscow, 1967.
Horst, A. Molekuliarnaia patologiia. Moscow, 1967. (Translated from Polish.)
Khimiia biologicheski aktivnykh prirodnykh soedinenii, vol. 2. Moscow, 1976.
Shapiro, D. Chemistry of Sphingolipids. Paris, 1969.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
Cerebrosides with antiproliferative activity from Euphorbia peplis L.
Three cerebrosides from the sea cucumber Cucumaria frondosa.
Cerebrosides are present in SC and they are able to block calcium-activated chloride channels in rat pulmonary artery smooth muscle cells (Gao et al., 2007).
Structure and biological functions of fungal cerebrosides. Anais da Academia Brasileira de Ciencias 76, 67-84.
The earliest studies to describe T-cell reactivity to gangliosides and cerebrosides in MS patients detected this reactivity using the active sheep erythrocyte (E-) rosette test.
In the first of the studies investigating enhancement of E-rosette formation in response to lipids by T cells from MS patients, Offner and Konat found that >95% of MS patients who were clinically stable at the time of testing responded to low (ng) doses of bovine cerebrosides or gangliosides [154].
Koezuka, Agelasphins, Novel Antitumor and Immunostimulatory Cerebrosides from the Marine Sponge Agelas mauritianus, Tetrahedron, 50, 2771 (1994).
Antibacterial and xanthine oxidase inhibitory cerebrosides from Fusarium sp IFB-121, an endophytic fungus in Quercus variabilis.
Vitthal Kulkarni, Ph.D of The Collaborative Group investigated the role of sphingolipids in skin delivery systems in his multiple-authored paper, "Lipid nanotubes as skin penetration modulators." Recent research revealed that certain sphingolipids, including cerebrosides and ceramides, form tubular microstructures upon hydration.
Furthermore, the existence of cerebrosides and alkaloids isolated from brittle star has been reported but no reports related to extraction of polysaccharide from brittle star exist (12).
The concentration of cerebrosides and sulfatides is decreased during ischemia (Mikulas et al.
Glycolipids (Cerebrosides) are substances which on hydrolysis yield fatty acids, galactose (sugar) and the nitrogenous compound sphingosine.