Adipocyte Phenotype Flexibility and Lipid Dysregulation

Kyle J. Preston, Rosario G. Scalia, Michael V. Autieri

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


The prevalence of obesity and associated cardiometabolic diseases continues to rise, despite efforts to improve global health. The adipose tissue is now regarded as an endocrine organ since its multitude of secretions, lipids chief among them, regulate systemic functions. The loss of normal adipose tissue phenotypic flexibility, especially related to lipid homeostasis, appears to trigger cardiometabolic pathogenesis. The goal of this manuscript is to review lipid balance maintenance by the lean adipose tissue’s propensity for phenotype switching, obese adipose tissue’s narrower range of phenotype flexibility, and what initial factors account for the waning lipid regulatory capacity. Metabolic, hypoxic, and inflammatory factors contribute to the adipose tissue phenotype being made rigid. A better grasp of normal adipose tissue function provides the necessary context for recognizing the extent of obese adipose tissue dysfunction and gaining insight into how pathogenesis evolves.

Original languageEnglish
Article number882
Issue number5
StatePublished - Mar 1 2022


  • Adipose tissue
  • Hypertrophy
  • Hypoxia
  • Inflammation
  • Lipid buffering
  • Lipolysis
  • Phenotype
  • Postprandial


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