Activation of thermogenesis in brown adipose tissue and dysregulated lipid metabolism associated with cancer cachexia in mice

Tsoli, Maria, Moore, Melissa, Burg, Dominic, Painter, Aarran, Taylor, Ryland, Lockie, Sarah H., Turner, Nigel, Warren, Aleaandra, Cooney, Greg, Oldfield, Brian, Clarke, Stephen and Robertson, Graham (2012) Activation of thermogenesis in brown adipose tissue and dysregulated lipid metabolism associated with cancer cachexia in mice. Cancer Research, 72, (17), 4372-4382. (doi:10.1158/0008-5472.CAN-11-3536). (PMID:22719069).


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Cancer cachexia/anorexia is a complex syndrome that involves profound metabolic imbalances and is directly implicated as a cause of death in at least 20% to 30% of all cancers. Brown adipose tissue (BAT) plays a key role in thermogenesis and energy balance and potentially contributes to the physiologic perturbations associated with cachexia. In this study, we investigated the impact of cachexia-inducing colorectal tumor on BAT in mice. We found that brown adipocytes were smaller and exhibited profound delipidation in cachectic tumor–bearing mice. Diurnal expression profiling of key regulators of lipid accumulation and fatty acid ?-oxidation and their corresponding target genes revealed dramatic molecular changes indicative of active BAT. Increased Ucp1, Pbe, and Cpt1? expression at specific points coincided with higher BAT temperatures during the dark cycle, suggestive of a temporal stimulation of thermogenesis in cachexia. These changes persisted when cachectic mice were acclimatized to 28°C confirming inappropriate stimulation of BAT despite thermoneutrality. Evidence of inflammatory signaling also was observed in the BAT as an energetically wasteful and maladaptive response to anorexia during the development of cachexia.

Item Type: Article
Digital Object Identifier (DOI): doi:10.1158/0008-5472.CAN-11-3536
ISSNs: 0008-5472 (print)
1538-7445 (electronic)
Subjects: R Medicine > RC Internal medicine > RC0254 Neoplasms. Tumors. Oncology (including Cancer)
Divisions : Faculty of Medicine > Biomedical Research Facility
Faculty of Natural and Environmental Sciences > Biological Sciences > Molecular & Cellular
ePrint ID: 343044
Accepted Date and Publication Date:
19 June 2012In press
1 September 2012Published
Date Deposited: 21 Sep 2012 10:49
Last Modified: 31 Mar 2016 14:34

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