So, what's a review on inositol phosphates doing in a nice lipid-themed place like this? (given how watersoluble and un-lipiddy they are). But they are, at least in animal cells, inextricably linked with inositol lipids. The link is the phospholipase C (PI-PLC) reaction, which splits phosphatidylinositol 4,5-bisphosphate [PtdIns(4,5)P 2 ] into diacylglycerol and Ins(1,4,5)P 3 , of which the latter mobilizes intracellular Ca 2+ (this well-known inositol phosphate will not be discussed further). Over the last few years, a consensus has emerged that the PI-PLC reaction is also the starting point of all inositol phosphate synthesis in animal cells (Figure 1). Some organisms, especially InsP 6 -obsessives such as higher plants (who make lots of InsP 6 to use as a phosphate-storage compound) and slime moulds (who make even more InsP 6 even more quickly, for reasons known only to slime moulds) can also phosphorylate inositol sequentially up to InsP 6 without any lipid intermediate. But we animals apparently have to start with Ins(1,4,5)P 3 generated from PtdIns(4,5)P 2 to make all our inositol phosphates.
The list of Biochemical Journal papers selected by the Editorial Board 1–12 for the ‘classic’ status in signalling (plus a couple of directly relevant classics from the metabolism/enzymes section that I have included) consists almost entirely of papers with inositol or inositide in the title. This reflects a truly remarkable relationship between inositides, UK scientists and the Biochemical Journal .