ENDOCRINOLOGY, vol.149, no.5, pp.2121-2130, 2008 (SCI-Expanded)
Peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor-gamma (PPAR gamma) activation up-regulates thermogenesis-related genes in rodent white and brown adipose tissues (WAT and BAT) without increasing whole-body energy expenditure. We tested here whether such dissociation is the result of a negative modulation of sympathetic activity to WAT and BAT and thyroid axis components by PPAR gamma activation. Administration of the PPAR gamma agonist rosiglitazone (15 mg/kg center dot d) for 7 d to male Sprague Dawley rats increased food intake (10%), feed efficiency (31%), weight gain (45%), spontaneous motor activity (60%), and BAT and WAT mass and reduced whole-body oxygen consumption. Consistent with an anabolic setting, rosiglitazone markedly reduced sympathetic activity to BAT and WAT(> 50%) and thyroid status as evidenced by reduced levels of plasma thyroid hormones (T-4 and T-3) and mRNA levels of BAT and liver T-3-generating enzymes iodothyronine type 2 (-40%) and type 1 (-32%) deiodinases, respectively. Rosiglitazone also decreased mRNA levels of the thyroid hormone receptor (THR) isoforms alpha 1 (-34%) and beta (-66%) in BAT and isoforms alpha 1 (-20%) and alpha 2 (-47%) in retroperitoneal WAT. These metabolic effects were associated with a reduction in mRNAlevels of the pro-energy expenditure peptides CRH and CART in specific hypothalamic nuclei. A direct central action of rosiglitazone is, however, unlikely based on its low brain uptake and lack of metabolic effects of intracerebroventricular administration. In conclusion, a reduction in BAT sympathetic activity and thyroid status appears to, at least partly, explain the PPAR gamma-induced reduction in energy expenditure and the fact that up-regulation of thermogenic gene expression does not translate into functional stimulation of whole-body thermogenesis in vivo.