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Am J Physiol. 1995 Mar;268(3 Pt 2):R744-51.

Catecholaminergic innervation of white adipose tissue in Siberian hamsters.

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Department of Psychology, Georgia State University, Atlanta 30303.


When Siberian hamsters are transferred from long summerlike days (LDs) to short winterlike days (SDs) they decrease their body weight, primarily as body fat. These SD-induced decreases in lipid stores are not uniform. Internally located white adipose tissue (WAT) pads are depleted preferentially of lipid, whereas the more externally located subcutaneous WAT pads are relatively spared. These data suggest a possible differential sympathetic neural control over catecholamine-induced lipolysis and that lipolytic rates are greater for internal vs. external WAT pads. Moreover, if these differential rates of lipolysis are due to differential sympathetic nervous system (SNS) drives on the pads, then fat pad-specific catecholaminergic innervation may exist. Therefore, we tested whether inguinal WAT (IWAT; an external pad) and epididymal WAT (EWAT; an internal pad) were innervated differentially. In addition, we tested whether norepinephrine (NE) turnover (TO) reflected the presumed greater SNS drive on EWAT vs. IWAT after SD exposure. Injections of fluorescent tract tracers [Fluoro-Gold or indocarbocyanine perchlorate (DiI)] demonstrated projections from the SNS ganglia T13-L3 to both fat pads. Retrograde labeling revealed a relatively separate pattern of distribution of labeled neurons in the ganglia projecting to each pad. In vivo anterograde transport of DiI resulted in labeling in both IWAT and EWAT that included staining around individual adipocytes and occasionally retrogradely labeled cells. The proportionately greater decrease in EWAT compared with IWAT mass after 5 wk of SD exposure was reflected in greater EWAT NE TO than found in their LD counterparts for this pad.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS).

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