Abstract 435: Brown Adipose Tissue Activation in the Postprandial State Reflects on Plasma Lipoproteins and Immune Cell Response in Humans
Background: Brown adipose tissue (BAT) has a unique to ability to use excess energy for heat production. It is therefore an attractive target organ for counteracting obesity and related metabolic diseases where overfeeding is an underlying cause. BAT has in murine models been shown to clear postprandial lipids quickly. The postprandial response is associated to systemic inflammatory alterations and an increased lipid pressure possibly driving atherosclerosis development. We hypothesized that BAT activation would affect postprandial lipid clearance and that this would reflect in an altered immune cell response.
Methods: Young male volunteers were subject to an oral fat tolerance test at two separate occasions during both cold stimulation and in thermoneutral control conditions. Body temperature and EMG activity was monitored and energy expenditure (EE) was measured. Blood samples were taken at baseline and every 30 min for 2 h. Plasma lipids and the immune cell response.
Results: Cold stimulation during OFTT resulted in a 19,4 % higher EE compared to warm conditions (P=0,007). Surprisingly, no changes in plasma TG were observed. A 2-fold elevation in free fatty acids (FFA) was seen in cold which also correlated positively with EE (P=0,008). Total plasma cholesterol increased compared to warm conditions by 0,56 mmol/L (P=0,050). LDL-c and HDL-c were increased in cold (0,20 mmol/L difference P=0,048 and 0,16 mmol/L P=0,002) whereas remnant-c was unaltered between the two thermal conditions. White blood cell count (WBC) after OFTT was significantly increased in cold (P = 0,018) by 0,29 х 109/L.
Discussion: BAT activation in the postprandial state results in increased HDL-c, possibly indicating increased vascular lipolysis and associated pre-β HDL particle formation. Increased VLDL production due to elevated FFA levels in the cold state and might explain why plasma TG is unaltered and also why LDL-c remains at a higher concentration in the cold.
Conclusions: BAT might be an attractive target for obesity treatment but potentially displays pro-atherogenic properties that must be addressed in longitudinal studies.
Author Disclosures: A. Mellerowicz: None. M. Ericsson: None. M. Hedlund: None. S.K. Nilsson: None.
- © 2014 by American Heart Association, Inc.