Mouse models of lipodystrophy and their significance in understanding fat regulation

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Adipose tissue plays a critical role in human metabolic health. This is most dramatically illustrated by the severe metabolic disease that occurs in syndromes of lipodystrophy where individuals fail to develop or maintain appropriate adipose tissue mass. The most severe form of this disorder is congenital generalized lipodystrophy (CGL). Individuals with CGL have a striking paucity of adipose tissue and typically display severe metabolic disease with insulin resistance and dyslipidemia. Understanding of the metabolic consequences of lipodystrophies and their underlying molecular mechanisms will provide new information regarding the development and function of human adipose tissue. Mouse models of these conditions offer key resources to investigate this in vivo. Adipocyte dysfunction is believed to underlie the development of metabolic disease in obesity. Hence, understanding how one might beneficially manipulate adipose tissue by studying genes whose disruption causes lipodystrophy is likely to suggest novel means to improve metabolic health in common obesity.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)53-96
Number of pages44
JournalCurrent topics in developmental biology
Early online date16 Jun 2014
Publication statusPublished - 2014

Bibliographical note

© 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.


  • lipodystrophy
  • BSCL
  • CGL
  • FPLD
  • adipocytes
  • adipogenesis
  • lipids
  • obesity
  • metabolic disease


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