Norepinephrine-induced shift in levels of adenosine 3':5'-monophosphate and ATP parallel to increased respiratory rate and lipolysis in isolated hamster brown-fat cells

Eur J Biochem. 1976 Feb 16;62(2):383-90. doi: 10.1111/j.1432-1033.1976.tb10170.x.


1. Isolated brown fat cells from hamster respond to added catecholamines with a temporary increase in respiratory rate and an extended lipolysis. 2. From experiments with catecholamines and alpha and beta-blockers, the receptors of these cells are classified as beta according to classical definition. 3. Norepinephrine induces a rapid increase in adenosine 3':5'-monophosphate levels which parallels in time the stimulated respiration. Maximal adenosine 3':5'-monophosphate levels are reached within 1-3 min and are followed by a continuous decline. 4. Parallel to the catecholamine-induced respiration and lipolysis there is a pronounced drop in ATP levels. This energy depletion could be reversed by addition within 5 min after norepinephrine of the beta-blocker propranolol. 5. The nucleotide pattern in isolated hamster brown fat cells after norepinephrine addition was mimicked in experiments with isolated hamster brown fat mitochondria. From these experiments it is concluded that a high ratio of AMP and ADP over ATP decreases the respiratory rate when endogenous free fatty acids are oxidized.

MeSH terms

  • Adenosine Diphosphate / metabolism
  • Adenosine Monophosphate / metabolism
  • Adenosine Triphosphate / metabolism*
  • Adipose Tissue, Brown / drug effects
  • Adipose Tissue, Brown / metabolism*
  • Animals
  • Cricetinae
  • Cyclic AMP / metabolism*
  • Fatty Acids, Nonesterified / metabolism
  • Kinetics
  • Lipid Mobilization / drug effects*
  • Norepinephrine / pharmacology*
  • Oxygen Consumption / drug effects*
  • Receptors, Drug / drug effects


  • Fatty Acids, Nonesterified
  • Receptors, Drug
  • Adenosine Monophosphate
  • Adenosine Diphosphate
  • Adenosine Triphosphate
  • Cyclic AMP
  • Norepinephrine