Nitric oxide and thermogenesis--challenge in molecular cell physiology

Front Biosci (Schol Ed). 2011 Jun 1;3:1180-95. doi: 10.2741/219.


Only recently we can link thermogenesis, mitochondria, nitric oxide, and redox regulation in biochemical terms. Currently, we are discussing these processes from the aspect of fundamental principles of molecular physiology. Thus, the present article highlights both cell physiology and the principles of the maintenance of energy homeostasis in organisms. Energy homeostasis means much more than simple combustion; adipose tissues at this point of evolution development are related to a broad spectrum of metabolic disturbances and all aspects of cellular remodeling (i.e. structural, metabolic and endocrine changes). Therefore, this paper addresses not only thermogenesis but also energy homeostasis, oxidative phosphorylation and ATP production, proliferation and differentiation of brown adipocytes, their life and death, mitochondriogenesis and angiogenesis. These processes will be united by molecular players of oxidation/reduction reactions, thus creating the principles based on the redox regulation.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adenosine Triphosphate / biosynthesis
  • Adipose Tissue, Brown / cytology
  • Adipose Tissue, Brown / physiology*
  • Gene Expression Regulation / physiology*
  • Humans
  • Ion Channels / metabolism
  • Mitochondria / physiology*
  • Mitochondrial Proteins / metabolism
  • Nitric Oxide Synthase / genetics
  • Nitric Oxide Synthase / metabolism*
  • Oxidation-Reduction
  • Oxidative Phosphorylation
  • Reactive Oxygen Species / metabolism*
  • Signal Transduction / physiology*
  • Thermogenesis / physiology*
  • Uncoupling Protein 1


  • Ion Channels
  • Mitochondrial Proteins
  • Reactive Oxygen Species
  • Uncoupling Protein 1
  • Adenosine Triphosphate
  • Nitric Oxide Synthase