Feast to famine: Oxygen starvation regulates fat cells in obesity

September 25, 2013
Feast to famine: Oxygen starvation regulates fat cells in obesity
3T3-L1 cells cultured under normoxia and hypoxia, followed by fractionation of both nucleus and cytoplasm: TIS7, Lamin B1 and β-tubulin expression determined by immunoblotting.

Studies of the effects of oxygen deprivation in the body fat of obese animals have revealed links with the regulation of fat cell generation. Researchers at Kanazawa University have identified the role of the protein TIS7 in processes that regulate adipogenesis, whereby non-specialised cells become adipose or fat cells. They add, "TIS7 could be a target for the discovery and development of a drug useful for the treatment and therapy of obesity or a variety of obesity-related metabolic diseases including type-2 diabetes and atherosclerosis."

Adipose tissue is essential for whole body homeostasis, storing excess energy and potentially a number of other physiological processes. Deregulation of these functions is found in obesity, prompting further study of the mechanisms behind white adipose tissue development.

Adipose tissue is poorly oxygenated in obese humans and animals. Poor oxygenation or 'hypoxia' has been linked to a number of diseases including heart and lung disorders, anemia, and . There have also been reports indicating that the protein TIS7 is expressed in tissues following injuries, such as ischemia, stroke or muscle trauma. Yukio Yoneda and colleagues at the University of Kanazawa monitored TIS7 expression in vitro and found that it was drastically increased by hypoxic stress.

The researchers then compared mice fed different diets and found significant up-regulation of TIS7 in the of mice fed a high fat diet. Following further studies of various aspects of adipogenesis and the role of hypoxia and TIS7, the researchers conclude, "It thus appears that TIS7 is a novel pivotal transcriptional regulator of hypoxia-induced repression of adipogenesis." They add that further studies are needed to understand the exact mechanism underlying the up-regulation of TIS7 under hypoxia in cells prior to adipogenesis.

Explore further: Control of blood vessels a possible weapon against obesity

More information: Nakamura, Y. et al. Repression of adipogenesis through promotion of Wnt/?-catenin signaling by TIS7 up-regulated in adipocytes under hypoxia, Biochimica et Biophysica Acta 1832 (2013) 1117–1128.

Related Stories

Control of blood vessels a possible weapon against obesity

January 7, 2009

Mice exposed to low temperatures develop more blood vessels in their adipose tissue and metabolise body fat more quickly, according to a new study from Karolinska Institutet. Scientists now hope to learn how to control blood ...

Recommended for you

Chemists solve major piece of cellular mystery

August 27, 2015

Not just anything is allowed to enter the nucleus, the heart of eukaryotic cells where, among other things, genetic information is stored. A double membrane, called the nuclear envelope, serves as a wall, protecting the contents ...

Study reveals how nanochannels select potassium ions

August 25, 2015

(Phys.org)—One of the mysteries in biology is how cells can selectively diffuse potassium across a membrane. Biological systems rely on a delicate balance between these potassium and sodium ion concentrations in the surrounding ...

Unusual use of blue pigment found in ancient mummy portraits

August 26, 2015

Mostly untouched for 100 years, 15 Roman-era Egyptian mummy portraits and panel paintings were literally dusted off by scientists and art conservators from Northwestern University and the Phoebe A. Hearst Museum of Anthropology ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.