Diminished respiratory responses of brown adipocytes isolated from BIO 14.6 dystrophic hamsters

Barbara A Horwitz, S. J. Wickler

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Catecholamine-induced thermogenesis is significantly diminished in BIO 14.6 cardiomyopathic hamsters as demonstrated by a reduced increase in oxygen consumption of these hamsters in response to administered isoproterenol. This decreased responsiveness is accompanied by a reduction in the amount of brown adipose tissue, a major nonshivering thermogenic effector. The present study demonstrates that the metabolic responses of individual brown fat cells are also altered in the dystrophic hamster. That is, 1 μM norepinephrine, the physiological mediator of nonshivering thermogenesis, evoked rates of oxygen consumption that were significantly lower in brown adipocytes isolated from the BIO 14.6 hamsters than in those from normal controls. Additionally, the dystrophic adipocytes exhibited: decreased maximal activity (per cell as well as per milligram protein) of citrate synthase; decreased cell size; and decreased amounts of protein per cell. These data indicate that the nonshivering thermogenic capacity of the intact BIO 14.6 hamsters reflects altered characteristics of the individual brown adipocytes themselves, as well as decreased amounts of the tissue.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)35-40
Number of pages6
JournalProceedings of the Society for Experimental Biology and Medicine
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1983

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)


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