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J Gerontol A Biol Sci Med Sci. 2010 Mar;65(3):242-51. doi: 10.1093/gerona/glp213. Epub 2010 Jan 27.

Aging, depot origin, and preadipocyte gene expression.

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  • 1Department of Medicine, Boston University, Massachusetts, USA.


Fat distribution changes with aging. Inherent changes in fat cell progenitors may contribute because fat cells turn over throughout life. To define mechanisms, gene expression was profiled in preadipocytes cultured from epididymal and perirenal depots of young and old rats. 8.4% of probe sets differed significantly between depots, particularly developmental genes. Only 0.02% differed with aging, despite using less stringent criteria than for comparing depots. Twenty-five genes selected based on fold change with aging were analyzed in preadipocytes from additional young, middle-aged, and old animals by polymerase chain reaction. Thirteen changed significantly with aging, 13 among depots, and 9 with both. Genes involved in inflammation, stress, and differentiation changed with aging, as occurs in fat tissue. Age-related changes were greater in perirenal than epididymal preadipocytes, consistent with larger declines in replication and adipogenesis in perirenal preadipocytes. Thus, age-related changes in preadipocyte gene expression differ among depots, potentially contributing to fat redistribution and dysfunction.

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