Pathways to Understanding Virus-Host Metabolism Interactions

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Purpose of Review: Viruses have vast diversity in terms of virion structure, genomic content, and host. All viruses, however, rely on host metabolism as none encode a metabolic network. Although virus-host metabolism interactions are critical to infection, little is understood regarding viral remodeling of its host metabolic network. Likewise, for most viruses, we have yet to identify if and how viruses govern the activity of metabolic pathways. Fortunately, metabolic analyses are becoming more accessible to virologist, thanks in large part to advances in mass spectrometry-based approaches. A brief overview of virus-metabolism interactions and the current state-of-the-art approaches to metabolomics, lipidomics and metabolic analyses are discussed. Recent Findings: In the last several years, multiple metabolomic and lipidomic studies during virus infection have been reported. Products of the metabolic network support or limit infection. When considering how viruses interact with host metabolism it is critical for virologist to think beyond their copy of a Biochemistry textbook, as computational and analytical advances in recent years have led to novel discoveries in metabolism. Some of those advances and discoveries are introduced here, with a focus on the recent findings in virus-host metabolism interactions. Summary: Metabolism is important to viral infections beyond simply keeping a cell alive while the virus replicates. Recent advances in tools and methods to dissect metabolism during infection have led to novel findings in infection-induced changes in metabolism. Continued research is necessary to build comprehensive understanding of how viruses interact with their host’s metabolic network.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)34-43
Number of pages10
JournalCurrent Clinical Microbiology Reports
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 15 2019


  • Lipidomics
  • Mass spectrometry
  • Metabolism
  • Metabolomics
  • Viral remodeling

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology (medical)
  • Infectious Diseases


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