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Brain Res Bull. 1984 Feb;12(2):151-60.

Nonshivering thermogenesis.

Abstract

Nonshivering thermogenesis was originally defined as a cold-induced increase in heat production not associated with the muscle activity of shivering. Recent research shows it to be a metabolic process located primarily in brown adipose tissue and controlled by the activity of the sympathetic nervous supply of this tissue. Another stimulus to sympathetic nervous activity, the ingestion of food, promotes diet-induced thermogenesis in brown adipose tissue. Brown adipose tissue grows and regresses in accordance with the extent to which it is stimulated, either by cold or by diet, and the capacity of the animal for cold-induced nonshivering thermogenesis and diet-induced thermogenesis increases or decreases accordingly. In certain hibernators another stimulus, photoperiod, promotes growth or regression of brown adipose tissue. The neural regulation of thermogenesis in brown adipose tissue is thus not only part of the central control mechanisms involved in thermoregulation but also part of those involved in the regulation of energy balance. In hibernators , such as the hamster, the neural regulation of thermogenesis in brown adipose tissue includes, in addition, central components that control the function of brown adipose tissue during entry into and arousal from hibernation and pineal or melatonin-related components that control its growth in response to photoperiod. In animals which become intermittently torpid, such as the mouse, the regulation includes in addition central components that control the function of brown adipose tissue during entry into and arousal from torpor. The central neural components involved in control of thermoregulation are better understood than are those involved in the regulation of energy balance. Studies of animal with hypothalamic obesity indicate that the control of diet-induced thermogenesis in brown adipose tissue requires the participation of the ventromedial region of the hypothalamus whereas the control of cold-induced nonshivering thermogenesis does not. The importance of comparative studies in different species is emphasized since any neural model for the control of brown adipose tissue thermogenesis is likely to apply in detail only to the species for which it was developed.

PMID:
6722594
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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