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Seung-Hee Cho 1 Article
Basic Research
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Adipose Tissue and Metabolic Health
Sung-Min An, Seung-Hee Cho, John C. Yoon
Diabetes Metab J. 2023;47(5):595-611.   Published online July 24, 2023
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AbstractAbstract PDFPubReader   ePub   
In this review, we provide a brief synopsis of the connections between adipose tissue and metabolic health and highlight some recent developments in understanding and exploiting adipocyte biology. Adipose tissue plays critical roles in the regulation of systemic glucose and lipid metabolism and secretes bioactive molecules possessing endocrine, paracrine, and autocrine functions. Dysfunctional adipose tissue has a detrimental impact on metabolic health and is intimately involved in key aspects of metabolic diseases such as insulin resistance, lipid overload, inflammation, and organelle stress. Differences in the distribution of fat depots and adipose characteristics relate to divergent degrees of metabolic dysfunction found in metabolically healthy and unhealthy obese individuals. Thermogenic adipocytes increase energy expenditure via mitochondrial uncoupling or adenosine triphosphate-consuming futile substrate cycles, while functioning as a metabolic sink and participating in crosstalk with other metabolic organs. Manipulation of adipose tissue provides a wealth of opportunities to intervene and combat the progression of associated metabolic diseases. We discuss current treatment modalities for obesity including incretin hormone analogs and touch upon emerging strategies with therapeutic potential including exosome-based therapy, pharmacological activation of brown and beige adipocyte thermogenesis, and administration or inhibition of adipocyte-derived factors.


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