In a recent study, repeated cold application induced beiging in subcutaneous white adipose tissue (SC WAT) of humans independent of body mass index. To identify factors that promote or inhibit beiging, we performed multiplex analysis of gene expression with the Nanostring nCounter system (the probe set contained genes for specific immune cell markers, cytokines, and chemokines) on the SC WAT from lean subjects. Multiple correlations analysis identified mast cell tryptase and CCL26, a chemokine for mast cells, as genes whose change correlated positively with the change in UCP1 in SC WAT, leading to the hypothesis that mast cells promote SC WAT beiging in response to cold. We quantified mast cell recruitment into SC WAT and degranulation. Mast cells increased in number in SC WAT in lean subjects, and there was an increase in the number of degranulated mast cells in both lean subjects and subjects with obesity. We determined that norepinephrine stimulated mast cell degranulation and histamine release in vitro. In conclusion, cold stimulated adipose tissue mast cell recruitment in lean subjects and mast cell degranulation in SC WAT of all research participants independent of baseline body mass index, suggesting that mast cells promote adipose beiging through the release of histamine or other products.

Original languageEnglish
Article number8658
JournalScientific Reports
Issue number1
StatePublished - Dec 1 2019

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
We wish to thank the staff of the University of Kentucky Clinical Research Unit for the assistance with this study and Dorothy Ross for assistance with coordinating the recruitment of the participants. This work was supported by the following NIH grants: RO1 DK107646, RO1 DK112282, CTSA grant UL1TR001998, and P20 GM103527-06.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2019, The Author(s).

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General


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