Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Brown fat protects against diabetes, obesity in humans

Date:
July 23, 2014
Source:
University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston
Summary:
People with higher levels of brown fat, or brown adipose tissue, in their bodies have better blood sugar control, higher insulin sensitivity and a better metabolism for burning fat stores, researchers have shown for the first time. The findings suggest that, because of the brown fat's ability to better regulate blood sugar, this could be a potential medical weapon against diabetes.

Researchers at the University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston have shown for the first time that people with higher levels of brown fat, or brown adipose tissue, in their bodies have better blood sugar control, higher insulin sensitivity and a better metabolism for burning fat stores.

Their findings suggest that, because of the brown fat's ability to better regulate blood sugar, this could be a potential medical weapon against diabetes.

"We showed that exposure to mild cold raised whole body energy expenditure, increased glucose removal from the circulation and improved insulin sensitivity in men who have significant amounts of brown adipose tissue depots," stated UTMB's Labros Sidossis, professor of Internal Medicine, Division of Geriatric Medicine. "These results support the notion that brown adipose tissue may function as an anti-obesity and anti-diabetic tissue in humans."

People have two types of fat tissue in their bodies: the widely reviled white fat tissue and the less familiar brown fat tissue. One of the many ill health effects of excess white fat tissue is decreased insulin sensitivity, which is a major contributor to diabetes. On the other hand, brown fat has several healthy qualities, including protection against obesity and diabetes.

In their new study appearing in the journal Diabetes, Sidossis and his colleagues compared otherwise similar healthy men with either high or low levels of brown fat tissue on their resting energy expenditure, glucose usage and insulin sensitivity. These men were placed in either normal temperature conditions or were exposed to mildly cold temperatures for five to eight hours.

Throughout the cold or regular temperature exposure period, the team conducted comprehensive analyses of various bodily samples. They collected blood and breath samples to observe changes in glucose and insulin concentrations, hormone changes, whole body oxygen consumption and carbon dioxide production rates. They also aspirated brown and white fat tissue samples to analyze differences in cellular energy production and gene expression.

"In this study we show that, when activated via mild cold exposure, brown adipose tissue can increase energy expenditure and burn calories. This is good news for overweight and obese people," stated Sidossis. "Of even greater clinical significance may be the finding that brown fat can help the body regulate blood sugar more effectively. This is great news for people with insulin resistance and diabetes and suggests that brown fat may prove to be an important anti-diabetic tissue."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Maria Chondronikola, Elena Volpi, Elisabet Bψrsheim, Craig Porter, Palam Annamalai, Sven Enerbδck, Martin E. Lidell, Manish K. Saraf, Sebastien M. Labbe, Nicholas M. Hurren, Christina Yfanti, Tony Chao, Clark R. Andersen, Fernardo Cesani, Hal Hawkins, and Labros S. Sidossis. Brown Adipose Tissue Improves Whole Body Glucose Homeostasis and Insulin Sensitivity in Humans. Diabetes, July 2014 DOI: 10.2337/db14-0746 1939-327X

Cite This Page:

University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston. "Brown fat protects against diabetes, obesity in humans." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 23 July 2014. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/07/140723123944.htm>.
University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston. (2014, July 23). Brown fat protects against diabetes, obesity in humans. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 1, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/07/140723123944.htm
University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston. "Brown fat protects against diabetes, obesity in humans." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/07/140723123944.htm (accessed October 1, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Pregnancy Spacing Could Have Big Impact On Autism Risks

Pregnancy Spacing Could Have Big Impact On Autism Risks

Newsy (Oct. 1, 2014) — A new study says children born less than one year and more than five years after a sibling can have an increased risk for autism. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Robotic Hair Restoration

Robotic Hair Restoration

Ivanhoe (Oct. 1, 2014) — A new robotic procedure is changing the way we transplant hair. The ARTAS robot leaves no linear scarring and provides more natural results. Video provided by Ivanhoe
Powered by NewsLook.com
Insertable Cardiac Monitor

Insertable Cardiac Monitor

Ivanhoe (Oct. 1, 2014) — A heart monitor the size of a paperclip that can save your life. The “Reveal Linq” allows a doctor to monitor patients with A-Fib on a continuous basis for up to 3 years! Video provided by Ivanhoe
Powered by NewsLook.com
Attacking Superbugs

Attacking Superbugs

Ivanhoe (Oct. 1, 2014) — Two weapons hospitals can use to attack superbugs. Scientists in Ireland created a new gel resistant to superbugs, and a robot that can disinfect a room in minutes. Video provided by Ivanhoe
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories

 

Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins