SIRT2 suppresses adipocyte differentiation by deacetylating FOXO1 and enhancing FOXO1's repressive interaction with PPARgamma

Mol Biol Cell. 2009 Feb;20(3):801-8. doi: 10.1091/mbc.e08-06-0647. Epub 2008 Nov 26.


Sirtuin family of proteins possesses NAD-dependent deacetylase and ADP ribosyltransferase activities. They are found to respond to nutrient deprivation and profoundly regulate metabolic functions. We have previously reported that caloric restriction increases the expression of one of the seven mammalian sirtuins, SIRT2, in tissues such as white adipose tissue. Because adipose tissue is a key metabolic organ playing a critical role in whole body energy homeostasis, we went on to explore the function of SIRT2 in adipose tissue. We found short-term food deprivation for 24 h, already induces SIRT2 expression in white and brown adipose tissues. Additionally, cold exposure elevates SIRT2 expression in brown adipose tissue but not in white adipose tissue. Intraperitoneal injection of a beta-adrenergic agonist (isoproterenol) enhances SIRT2 expression in white adipose tissue. Retroviral expression of SIRT2 in 3T3-L1 adipocytes promotes lipolysis. SIRT2 inhibits 3T3-L1 adipocyte differentiation in low-glucose (1 g/l) or low-insulin (100 nM) condition. Mechanistically, SIRT2 suppresses adipogenesis by deacetylating FOXO1 to promote FOXO1's binding to PPARgamma and subsequent repression on PPARgamma transcriptional activity. Overall, our results indicate that SIRT2 responds to nutrient deprivation and energy expenditure to maintain energy homeostasis by promoting lipolysis and inhibiting adipocyte differentiation.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • 3T3-L1 Cells
  • Acetylation / drug effects
  • Adipocytes / cytology*
  • Adipocytes / drug effects
  • Adipocytes / metabolism*
  • Adipose Tissue, Brown / metabolism
  • Animals
  • Cell Differentiation* / drug effects
  • Cold Temperature
  • Fasting
  • Forkhead Box Protein O1
  • Forkhead Transcription Factors / metabolism*
  • Humans
  • Isoproterenol / pharmacology
  • Lipolysis / drug effects
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred C57BL
  • PPAR gamma / metabolism*
  • Protein Binding / drug effects
  • RNA, Messenger / genetics
  • RNA, Messenger / metabolism
  • Repressor Proteins / metabolism*
  • Sirtuin 2
  • Sirtuins / genetics
  • Sirtuins / metabolism*
  • Up-Regulation / drug effects


  • Forkhead Box Protein O1
  • Forkhead Transcription Factors
  • Foxo1 protein, mouse
  • PPAR gamma
  • RNA, Messenger
  • Repressor Proteins
  • Sirt2 protein, mouse
  • Sirtuin 2
  • Sirtuins
  • Isoproterenol