Role of adipose tissue renin-angiotensin system in metabolic and inflammatory diseases associated with obesity

Kidney Int. 2011 Jan;79(2):162-8. doi: 10.1038/ki.2010.391. Epub 2010 Oct 13.


Obesity is a leading cause of death worldwide because of its associated inflammatory disorders such as hypertension, cardiovascular and kidney diseases, dyslipidemia, glucose intolerance, and certain types of cancer. Adipose tissue expresses all components of the renin-angiotensin system necessary to generate angiotensin (Ang) peptides for local function. The angiotensin type 1 (AT1) and type 2 (AT2) receptors mediate the effect of Ang II and recent studies have shown that both receptors may modulate fat mass expansion through upregulation of adipose tissue lipogenesis (AT2) and downregulation of lipolysis (AT1). Thus, both receptors may have synergistic and additive effects to promote the storage of lipid in adipose tissue in response to the nutrient environment. The production of angiotensinogen (AGT) by adipose tissue in rodents also contributes to one third of the circulating AGT levels. Increased adipose tissue AGT production in the obese state may be responsible in part for the metabolic and inflammatory disorders associated with obesity. This supports the notion that besides the traditional role of Ang II produced by the liver in the control of blood pressure, Ang II produced by the adipose tissue may more accurately reflect the role of this hormone in the regulation of fat mass and associated disorders.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adipocytes / cytology
  • Adipocytes / metabolism
  • Adipose Tissue / cytology
  • Adipose Tissue / metabolism*
  • Animals
  • Blood Pressure / physiology
  • Body Weight / physiology
  • Cell Differentiation
  • Energy Metabolism
  • Humans
  • Inflammation / etiology
  • Inflammation / metabolism*
  • Insulin Resistance / physiology
  • Metabolic Diseases / etiology
  • Metabolic Diseases / metabolism*
  • Models, Biological
  • Obesity / etiology
  • Obesity / metabolism*
  • Paracrine Communication
  • Renin-Angiotensin System / physiology*