On the role of liver X receptors in lipid accumulation in adipocytes

Lene K. Juvet, Sissel M. Andresen, Gertrud U. Schuster, Knut Tomas Dalen, Kari Anne R. Tobin, Kristin Hollung, Fred Haugen, Severina Jacinto, Stine M. Ulven, Krister Bamberg, Jan Åke Gustafsson, Hilde I. Nebb

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

140 Scopus citations


The pivotal role of liver X receptors (LXRs) in the metabolic conversion of cholesterol to bile acids in mice is well established. More recently, the LXRα promoter has been shown to be under tight regulation by peroxisome proliferator-activated receptors (PPARs), implying a role for LXRα in mediating the interplay between cholesterol and fatty acid metabolism. We have studied the role of LXR in fat cells and demonstrate that LXR is regulated during adipogenesis and augments fat accumulation in mature adipocytes. LXRα expression in murine 3T3-L1 adipocytes as well as in human adipocytes was up-regulated in response to PPARγ agonists. Administration of a PPARγ agonist to obese Zucker rats also led to increased LXRα mRNA expression in adipose tissue in vivo. LXR agonist treatment of differentiating adipocytes led to increased lipid accumulation. An increase of the expression of the LXR target genes, sterol regulatory binding protein-1 and fatty acid synthase, was observed both in vivo and in vitro after treatment with LXR agonists for 24 h. Finally, we demonstrate that fat depots in LXRα/β-deficient mice are smaller than in age-matched wild-type littermates. These findings imply a role for LXR in controlling lipid storage capacity in mature adipocytes and point to an intriguing physiological interplay between LXR and PPARγ in controlling pathways in lipid handling.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)172-182
Number of pages11
JournalMolecular Endocrinology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 1 2003

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Biology
  • Endocrinology


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