Excess of adipose tissue is accompanied by an increase in the risk of developing insulin resistance, type 2 diabetes (T2D) and other complications. Nevertheless, total or partial absence of fat or its accumulation in other tissues (lipotoxicity) is also associated to these complications. White adipose tissue (WAT) was traditionally considered a metabolically active storage tissue for lipids while brown adipose tissue (BAT) was considered as a thermogenic adipose tissue with higher oxidative capacity. Nowadays, WAT is also considered an endocrine organ that contributes to energy homeostasis. Experimental evidence tends to link the malfunction of adipose mitochondria with the development of obesity and T2D. This review discusses the importance of mitochondrial function in adipocyte biology and the increased evidences of mitochondria dysfunction in these epidemics. New strategies targeting adipocyte mitochondria from WAT and BAT are also discussed as therapies against obesity and its complications in the near future.
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