Essential role of fibroblast growth factor signaling in preadipocyte differentiation

Nayan Patel, S Kumar, Margaret Eggo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


We have examined the expression and role of autocrine fibroblast growth factors (FGFs) in human preadipocytes through their differentiation in vitro. A high-molecular weight form of FGF-2 was initially strongly expressed, but 6-9 d after induction of differentiation, its expression decreased markedly. This coincided with the first appearance of visible lipid droplets within the cells. FGF-2 (18 kDa) was not found. FGF receptor (FGFR) 1 was detected as a single band of 125 kDa that also decreased with differentiation. Its decrease preceded that of FGF-2. Despite the decrease in cell-associated FGF-2 with differentiation, secreted FGF-2 was 2.5-fold higher in the differentiated preadipocytes. To determine whether FGF-2 had an autocrine role, FGFR signaling was inhibited using recombinant adenovirus expressing dominant negative FGFR1 (RAdDN-FGFR1) and a specific inhibitor of FGFR1 signaling, PD166866. Preadipocytes transduced with RAdDN-FGFR1 expressed a truncated, 79-kDa FGFR1. Differentiation, assessed by lipid droplet formation, was completely prevented by RAdDN-FGFR1 and by PD166866. The protein content in the cell layer and glucose uptake were significantly reduced by both agents. The insulin-sensitizing drug, rosiglitazone, did not prevent the actions of RAdDN-FGFR1 or PD166866. Controlling adipose tissue growth by limiting FGF actions may provide a means to combat obesity.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1226-1232
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism
Publication statusPublished - 23 Nov 2004


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