Adipose tissue distribution and quantification of PPARbeta/delta and PPARgamma1-3 mRNAs: discordant gene expression in subcutaneous, retroperitoneal and visceral adipose tissue of morbidly obese patients

Obes Surg. 2007 Jul;17(7):934-40. doi: 10.1007/s11695-007-9172-5.


Background: Adipose tissue (AT) metabolism is altered in obese subjects, and the reestablishment of energy homeostasis requires the identification and regulation of genes with altered patterns. The aim of this study was to compare mRNA expression of PPARbeta/delta and PPARgamma1-3 in morbidly obese and nonobese patients. The expression pattern of these receptors in various abdominal adipose tissues, subcutaneous (SAT), retroperitoneal (RAT) and visceral (VAT), was also evaluated.

Methods: The AT depots were obtained by surgery. Total RNAs were extracted using TRIzol. PPARs reverse transcripts were determined by quantitative polymerase chain reaction (qRT-PCR).

Results: The amounts of PPARP/8 mRNA in different depots of morbidly obese AT showed a significant decrease in VAT (P < 0.05). In the non-obese group, the level of PPARbeta/delta was higher in SAT (P < 0.05), but PPARgamma1-3 was not differentially expressed in obese and non-obese depots. When comparing obese and non-obese, the results revealed a decrease in PPARPbeta/delta expression in SAT (P = 0.058) and VAT (P = 0.094) of the morbidly obese. PPARgamma1-3 mRNA expression was increased significantly in SAT (P = 0.022) and decreased in RAT (P = 0.034) in morbidly obese subjects. PPARbeta/delta expression in SAT and VAT correlated negatively with hip size and insulin serum respectively. PPARgamma1-3 expression in RAT correlated negatively with waist and hip circumference and in VAT correlated positively with waist size.

Conclusions: The present study demonstrates that PPARbeta/delta and PPARgamma1-3 mRNAs are quantitatively different in AT of morbidly obese individuals compared to non-obese, and that PPARbeta/delta mRNA levels are characteristic for each AT depot.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adiposity / physiology
  • Adult
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Intra-Abdominal Fat / metabolism*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Obesity, Morbid / genetics
  • Obesity, Morbid / metabolism*
  • PPAR gamma / genetics
  • PPAR gamma / metabolism*
  • PPAR-beta / genetics
  • PPAR-beta / metabolism*
  • RNA, Messenger / metabolism
  • Subcutaneous Fat / metabolism*


  • PPAR gamma
  • PPAR-beta
  • RNA, Messenger