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Methylome and transcriptome maps of human visceral and subcutaneous adipocytes reveal key epigenetic differences at developmental genes


Adipocytes support key metabolic and endocrine functions of adipose tissue. Lipid is stored in two major classes of depots, namely visceral adipose (VA) and subcutaneous adipose (SA) depots. Increased visceral adiposity is associated with adverse health outcomes, whereas the impact of SA tissue is relatively metabolically benign. The precise molecular features associated with the functional differences between the adipose depots are still not well understood. Here, we characterised transcriptomes and methylomes of isolated adipocytes from matched SA and VA tissues of individuals with normal BMI to identify epigenetic differences and their contribution to cell type and depot-specific function. We found that DNA methylomes were notably distinct between different adipocyte depots and were associated with differential gene expression within pathways fundamental to adipocyte function. Most striking differential methylation was found at transcription factor and developmental genes. Our findings highlight the importance of developmental origins in the function of different fat depots.

Type Journal
ISBN 2045-2322 (Electronic) 2045-2322 (Linking)
Authors Bradford, S. T.; Nair, S. S.; Statham, A. L.; van Dijk, S. J.; Peters, T. J.; Anwar, F.; French, H. J.; von Martels, J. Z. H.; Sutcliffe, B.; Maddugoda, M. P.; Peranec, M.; Varinli, H.; Arnoldy, R.; Buckley, M.; Ross, J. P.; Zotenko, E.; Song, J. Z.; Stirzaker, C.; Bauer, D. C.; Qu, W.; Swarbrick, M. M.; Lutgers, H. L.; Lord, R. V.; Samaras, K.; Molloy, P. L.; Clark, S. J.
Responsible Garvan Author Prof Susan Clark
Publisher Name Scientific Reports
Published Date 2019-07-02
Published Volume 9
Published Issue 1
Published Pages 9511
Status Published in-print
DOI 10.1038/s41598-019-45777-w
URL link to publisher's version