Emerging Roles of Adipose Progenitor Cells in Tissue Development, Homeostasis, Expansion and Thermogenesis

Daniel C. Berry, Yuwei Jiang, Jonathan M. Graff

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

34 Scopus citations


Stem or progenitor cells are an essential component for the development, homeostasis, expansion, and regeneration of many tissues. Within white adipose tissue (WAT) reside vascular-resident adipose progenitor cells (APCs) that can proliferate and differentiate into either white or beige/brite adipocytes, which may control adiposity. Recent studies have begun to show that APCs can be manipulated to control adiposity and counteract 'diabesity'. However, much remains unknown about the identity of APCs and how they may control adiposity in response to homeostatic and external cues. Here, we discuss recent advances in our understanding of adipose progenitors and cover a range of topics, including the stem cell/progenitor lineage, their niche, their developmental and adult roles, and their role in cold-induced beige/brite adipocyte formation. Subcutaneous and visceral white adipose depots have different embryonic and postnatal development from different adipose progenitor sources.APCs contribute to adipocyte formation under both homeostatic and environmental cues.White APCs reside in a perivascular niche resembling a subset of mural cells.Beige APCs reside in a perivascular niche and, upon cold exposure, form beige adipocytes, a potential therapy to combat excess fat.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalTrends in Endocrinology and Metabolism
StateAccepted/In press - 2016



  • Adipose tissue
  • Beige/brite adipocytes
  • Niche
  • Obesity
  • Perivascular cells
  • Stem cells

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Endocrinology
  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism

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