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Browning of White Adipose Tissue as a Therapeutic Tool in the Fight against Atherosclerosis

Department of Pathology and Immunology, University of Geneva, CH-1211 Geneva, Switzerland
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Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: Gloria Alvarez-Llamas and Marta Martin-Lorenzo
Metabolites 2021, 11(5), 319; https://doi.org/10.3390/metabo11050319
Received: 14 April 2021 / Revised: 5 May 2021 / Accepted: 13 May 2021 / Published: 14 May 2021
Despite continuous medical advances, atherosclerosis remains the prime cause of mortality worldwide. Emerging findings on brown and beige adipocytes highlighted that these fat cells share the specific ability of non-shivering thermogenesis due to the expression of uncoupling protein 1. Brown fat is established during embryogenesis, and beige cells emerge from white adipose tissue exposed to specific stimuli like cold exposure into a process called browning. The consecutive energy expenditure of both thermogenic adipose tissues has shown therapeutic potential in metabolic disorders like obesity and diabetes. The latest data suggest promising effects on atherosclerosis development as well. Upon cold exposure, mice and humans have a physiological increase in brown adipose tissue activation and browning of white adipocytes is promoted. The use of drugs like β3-adrenergic agonists in murine models induces similar effects. With respect to atheroprotection, thermogenic adipose tissue activation has beneficial outcomes in mice by decreasing plasma triglycerides, total cholesterol and low-density lipoproteins, by increasing high-density lipoproteins, and by inducing secretion of atheroprotective adipokines. Atheroprotective effects involve an unaffected hepatic clearance. Latest clinical data tend to find thinner atherosclerotic lesions in patients with higher brown adipose tissue activity. Strategies for preserving healthy arteries are a major concern for public health. View Full-Text
Keywords: white adipose tissue; brown adipose tissue; adipocytes; browning; non-shivering thermogenesis; β3-adrenergic stimulation; cold exposure; atherosclerosis; atheroprotection white adipose tissue; brown adipose tissue; adipocytes; browning; non-shivering thermogenesis; β3-adrenergic stimulation; cold exposure; atherosclerosis; atheroprotection
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MDPI and ACS Style

Roth, C.L.; Molica, F.; Kwak, B.R. Browning of White Adipose Tissue as a Therapeutic Tool in the Fight against Atherosclerosis. Metabolites 2021, 11, 319. https://doi.org/10.3390/metabo11050319

AMA Style

Roth CL, Molica F, Kwak BR. Browning of White Adipose Tissue as a Therapeutic Tool in the Fight against Atherosclerosis. Metabolites. 2021; 11(5):319. https://doi.org/10.3390/metabo11050319

Chicago/Turabian Style

Roth, Christel L., Filippo Molica, and Brenda R. Kwak. 2021. "Browning of White Adipose Tissue as a Therapeutic Tool in the Fight against Atherosclerosis" Metabolites 11, no. 5: 319. https://doi.org/10.3390/metabo11050319

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