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Connexin 43 Mediates White Adipose Tissue Beiging by Facilitating the Propagation of Sympathetic Neuronal Signals.

Authors: Zhu, Yi  Gao, Yong  Tao, Caroline  Shao, Mengle  Zhao, Shangang  Huang, Wei  Yao, Ting  Johnson, Joshua A  Liu, Tiemin  Cypess, Aaron M  Gupta, Olga  Holland, William L  Gupta, Rana K  Spray, David C  Tanowitz, Herbert B  Cao, Lei  Lynes, Matthew D  Tseng, Yu-Hua  Elmquist, Joel K  Williams, Kevin W  Lin, Hua V  Scherer, Philipp E 
Citation: Zhu Y, etal., Cell Metab. 2016 Sep 13;24(3):420-433. doi: 10.1016/j.cmet.2016.08.005.
Pubmed: (View Article at PubMed) PMID:27626200
DOI: Full-text: DOI:10.1016/j.cmet.2016.08.005

"Beige" adipocytes reside in white adipose tissue (WAT) and dissipate energy as heat. Several studies have shown that cold temperature can activate pro-opiomelanocortin-expressing (POMC) neurons and increase sympathetic neuronal tone to regulate WAT beiging. WAT, however, is traditionally known to be sparsely innervated. Details regarding the neuronal innervation and, more importantly, the propagation of the signal within the population of "beige" adipocytes are sparse. Here, we demonstrate that beige adipocytes display an increased cell-to-cell coupling via connexin 43 (Cx43) gap junction channels. Blocking of Cx43 channels by 18α-glycyrrhetinic acid decreases POMC-activation-induced adipose tissue beiging. Adipocyte-specific deletion of Cx43 reduces WAT beiging to a level similar to that observed in denervated fat pads. In contrast, overexpression of Cx43 is sufficient to promote beiging even with mild cold stimuli. These data reveal the importance of cell-to-cell communication, effective in cold-induced WAT beiging, for the propagation of limited neuronal inputs in adipose tissue.


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RGD Object Information
RGD ID: 13673847
Created: 2018-06-23
Species: All species
Last Modified: 2018-06-23
Status: ACTIVE


RGD is funded by grant HL64541 from the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute on behalf of the NIH.