Regulation of gene expression during adipocyte differentiation: a review.

H. R. Gaskins, G. J. Hausman, R. J. Martin

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


The differentiation of adipose precursor cells is accompanied by the acquisition of adipocyte-specific messenger (m) RNAs allowing characteristic changes in protein composition. The development of methods for cloning and characterizing individual genes has provided the opportunity to study selective gene expression by adipocytes at the molecular level. In this review, the information obtained to date regarding transcriptional and post-transcriptional regulatory mechanisms utilized by adipocytes is summarized. Included are descriptions of conserved DNA sequences found in noncoding regions of adipose genes and of how protein-DNA interactions at these regions are thought to regulate the initiation of transcription. Among the transcription factors implemented in regulation of adipocyte-specific gene expression are the protein product of the proto-oncogene c-fos, the triiodothyronine receptor and steroid hormone receptors. Data also are discussed that indicate that RNA editing and determinants of mRNA stability contribute to the adipocyte phenotype. It is hoped that a review of the regulatory aspects of gene expression during adipocyte differentiation will identify areas deserving further study by researchers interested in understanding adipose development.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2263-2272
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of animal science
Issue number9
StatePublished - Sep 1989
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Food Science
  • Animal Science and Zoology
  • Genetics


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