Similar degrees of obesity induced by diet or aging cause strikingly different immunologic and metabolic outcomes

Kanthi B. Krishna, Maja Stefanovic-Racic, Nikolaos Dedousis, Ian Sipula, Robert M. O'Doherty

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations

Abstract

In obesity, adipose tissue (AT) and liver are infiltrated with Th-1 polarized immune cells, which are proposed to play an important role in the pathogenesis of the metabolic abnormalities of obesity. Aging is also associated with increased adiposity, but the effects of this increase on inflammation and associated metabolic dysfunction are poorly understood. To address this issue, we assessed insulin resistance (IR) and AT and liver immunophenotype in aged, lean (AL) and aged, obese (AO) mice, all of whom were maintained on a standard chow diet (11% fat diet) throughout their lives. For comparison, these variables were also assessed in young, lean (YL) and young diet-induced obese mice (41% fat diet, YO). Despite similar body weight and fat accumulation, YO mice were substantially more IR and had greater liver steatosis compared to AO mice. YO also had elevated infiltration of macrophages/dendritic cells in AT and liver, but these increases were absent in AO. Furthermore, liver immune cells of YO were more Th-1 polarized then AO. Notably, aging was associated with accumulation of T cells, but this occurred independent of obesity. Together, the data suggest that reduced inflammation in AO underlies the improved insulin sensitivity and lowered steatosis compared to YO. We assessed insulin resistance, and AT and liver immunophenotype in aged, lean and aged, obese mice (AO), all of whom were maintained on a standard chow diet (11% fat diet) throughout their lives. For comparison these variables were also assessed in young, lean and young diet-induced obese mice (41% fat diet, YO). The data suggest that reduced inflammation in AO underlies improved insulin sensitivity and lowered steatosis compared to YO.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1-11
Number of pages11
JournalPhysiological reports
Volume4
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 1 2016

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Physiology
  • Physiology (medical)

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