Special Issue "Advances in D-amino Acids Research: New Insight in Physiology, Metabolism and Applications"

A special issue of Metabolites (ISSN 2218-1989). This special issue belongs to the section "Cell Metabolism".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 15 December 2023 | Viewed by 180

Special Issue Editors

Department of Biotechnology and Life Sciences, University of Insubria, 21100 Varese, Italy
Interests: D-amino acids metabolism; flavooxidases; neurochemistry; protein-protein interaction; protein function regulation
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals
Dr. Jumpei Sasabe
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Department of Pharmacology, Keio University School of Medicine, Tokyo, Japan
Interests: D-amino acid metabolism; host-microbe interaction; symbiosis; immunology; neurobiology; endocrinology

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

All amino acids other than glycine exist in either the L- and D-enantiomers, which are mirror images of each other. D-amino acids (D-AAs) were long considered to be “the wrong isoform”, i.e., they were taken to be non-functional or even absent in living organisms, with the exception of bacteria. Over the last few decades, however, they were found to be widely distributed in plants, invertebrates, and vertebrates including humans, and have since been acknowledged to play a role in several key biological processes. Moreover, accumulated evidence of their physiological functions and metabolic pathways (biosynthesis, transport and degradation) has led to a keen, renewed interest in their study.

D-AAs are fundamental in microbial physiology as key constituents of the peptidoglycan layer. They are also produced and released by several bacterial species and act as effector molecules, regulating cell wall biogenesis, biofilm integrity, and spore germination. In mammals, D-serine, D-aspartate, and D-alanine represent the most abundant D-AAs in neuroendocrine and endocrine tissues and, due to their contribution to neurotransmission, the most studied ones. These and others D-AAs have also been implicated in regulating innate immunity and gut barrier function. Worthy of note, increasing evidence supports a role for D-AAs in pathological processes, including neurological diseases, psychiatric disorders, chronic kidney disease and cancer. Moreover, the scientific community has begun to recognize the potential of D-AAs as biomarkers, but also as therapeutic agents for treating neurological diseases and tissue/organ injury, ameliorating reproduction function, and preventing biofilm infection.

The aim of this Special Issue is to catalyze the interest of people working in the field and publish their recent research. Potential topics include recent research into D-AAs, their biological roles in different organisms, their metabolism, their involvement in pathologies, and their use as biomarkers for diagnostic purposes and add-on therapies to pharmacological treatments. Overall, our objective is to further broaden the horizons of this research topic, which no longer represents a niche.

Dr. Silvia Sacchi
Dr. Jumpei Sasabe
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Metabolites is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2700 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.


  • metabolism
  • microbiota
  • cell signaling
  • neuromodulators
  • endocrine modulators
  • pathological processes
  • diagnosis
  • biomarker
  • peptidoglycan
  • biofilms

Published Papers

This special issue is now open for submission.
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