Fetal programming of adipose tissue function: an evolutionary perspective

Fetal programming of adipose tissue function: an evolutionary perspective Obesity is an escalating threat of pandemic proportions and has risen to such unrivaled prominence in such a short period of time that it has come to define a whole generation in many countries around the globe. The burden of obesity, however, is not equally shared among the population, with certain ethnicities being more prone to obesity than others, while some appear to be resistant to obesity altogether. The reasons behind this ethnic basis for obesity resistance and susceptibility, however, have remained largely elusive. In recent years, much evidence has shown that the level of brown adipose tissue thermogenesis, which augments energy expenditure and is negatively associated with obesity in both rodents and humans, varies greatly between ethnicities. Interestingly, the incidence of low birth weight, which is associated with an increased propensity for obesity and cardiovascular disease in later life, has also been shown to vary by ethnic background. This review serves to reconcile ethnic variations in BAT development and function with ethnic differences in birth weight outcomes to argue that the variation in obesity susceptibility between ethnic groups may have its origins in the in utero programming of BAT development and function as a result of evolutionary adaptation to cold environments. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Mammalian Genome Springer Journals

Fetal programming of adipose tissue function: an evolutionary perspective

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Publisher
Springer US
Copyright
Copyright © 2014 by Springer Science+Business Media New York
Subject
Life Sciences; Cell Biology; Anatomy; Zoology
ISSN
0938-8990
eISSN
1432-1777
D.O.I.
10.1007/s00335-014-9528-9
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Obesity is an escalating threat of pandemic proportions and has risen to such unrivaled prominence in such a short period of time that it has come to define a whole generation in many countries around the globe. The burden of obesity, however, is not equally shared among the population, with certain ethnicities being more prone to obesity than others, while some appear to be resistant to obesity altogether. The reasons behind this ethnic basis for obesity resistance and susceptibility, however, have remained largely elusive. In recent years, much evidence has shown that the level of brown adipose tissue thermogenesis, which augments energy expenditure and is negatively associated with obesity in both rodents and humans, varies greatly between ethnicities. Interestingly, the incidence of low birth weight, which is associated with an increased propensity for obesity and cardiovascular disease in later life, has also been shown to vary by ethnic background. This review serves to reconcile ethnic variations in BAT development and function with ethnic differences in birth weight outcomes to argue that the variation in obesity susceptibility between ethnic groups may have its origins in the in utero programming of BAT development and function as a result of evolutionary adaptation to cold environments.

Journal

Mammalian GenomeSpringer Journals

Published: Jun 27, 2014

References

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