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Tracking adipogenesis during white adipose tissue development, expansion and regeneration

Abstract

White adipose tissue displays high plasticity. We developed a system for the inducible, permanent labeling of mature adipocytes that we called the AdipoChaser mouse. We monitored adipogenesis during development, high-fat diet (HFD) feeding and cold exposure. During cold-induced 'browning' of subcutaneous fat, most 'beige' adipocytes stem from de novo–differentiated adipocytes. During HFD feeding, epididymal fat initiates adipogenesis after 4 weeks, whereas subcutaneous fat undergoes hypertrophy for a period of up to 12 weeks. Gonadal fat develops postnatally, whereas subcutaneous fat develops between embryonic days 14 and 18. Our results highlight the extensive differences in adipogenic potential in various fat depots.

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Figure 1: Inducible labeling of mature adipocytes.
Figure 2: HFD-induced adipose tissue hypertrophy and hyperplasia.
Figure 3: Lineage of the brown-like adipocytes in subcutaneous adipose tissue after cold exposure.
Figure 4: Adipogenesis in epididymal adipose tissue during cold exposure.
Figure 5: Development of epididymal and subcutaneous adipocytes during embryonic and postnatal development.

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Acknowledgements

We thank the University of Texas Southwestern Histology Core for assistance in embedding and processing tissue samples, especially J.M. Shelton for suggestions and discussions on the protocol of LacZ staining of adipose tissues. We also thank A.S. Greenberg from Tufts University for providing perilipin antibody. This study was supported by US National Institutes of Health (NIH) grants R01-DK55758, P01-DK088761 and R01-DK099110 (P.E.S.). Q.A.W. is supported by a postdoctoral fellowship from the American Diabetes Association (7-11-MN-47). R.K.G. is supported by NIH grants K01-DK090120-02 and R03-DK099428 and the Searle Scholars Program (Chicago, Illinois).

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Q.A.W. designed and performed the experiments and wrote the manuscript. C.T. assisted with mouse experiments. R.K.G. and P.E.S. conceptualized and designed the study and wrote the manuscript.

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Correspondence to Philipp E Scherer.

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The authors declare no competing financial interests.

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Wang, Q., Tao, C., Gupta, R. et al. Tracking adipogenesis during white adipose tissue development, expansion and regeneration. Nat Med 19, 1338–1344 (2013). https://doi.org/10.1038/nm.3324

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