Special Issue "Molecular Control of Adipose Cell Fate and Energy Metabolism"
Deadline for manuscript submissions: 31 December 2019.
Adipose tissues play a central role in energy homeostasis. Metabolic phenotypes of brown (BAT) and white adipose tissues (WAT) vary substantially in response to environmental cues. For instance, cold exposure is the physiological cue for stimulating adipose metabolic thermogenesis and results in BAT hyperplasia and browning of WAT via sympathetic nervous activation in small rodents. These manifestations in adipose thermogenesis not only facilitate the maintenance of body temperature in the cold but also result in the significant reduction of body fat content, improving insulin resistance. The rediscovery of metabolically active BAT in healthy adult humans in 2009 has given impetus to research on human BAT as a potential target to fight obesity and related metabolic diseases such as type 2 diabetes. However, despite several recent studies demonstrating that cold acclimation indeed recruits BAT in healthy humans, the BAT-targeting regimen remains a challenge for researchers and clinicians because chronic cold exposure in daily life is difficult to achieve for obese or diabetic patients owing to its uncomfortability and potential negative effects on cardiovascular function. The investigation and identification of molecular circuits that regulate the fate specification of brown adipocytes or brown-like (beige) adipocytes may lead to an alternative and effective therapeutic intervention targeting adipose tissue thermogenesis to counteract human obesity and metabolic disorders. To this end, more insights are needed into the physiological significance of human BAT and mechanisms by which BAT function is regulated by aging, as well as endogenous and environmental factors.
Thus, here we would like to highlight the current understand of molecular circuits that determine the fate specification of brown adipose cells and to investigate their physiological roles in energy homeostasis both in experimental animals and in humans. We also would like to depict advances in adipose tissue homeostasis and its metabolic implications for inflammation, obesity, as well as links to metabolic diseases.
Dr. Takeshi Yoneshiro
Manuscript Submission Information
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- Brown adipose tissue
- Beige adipose tissue
- Energy homeostasis
- Molecular circuits
- Metabolic diseases