Thermogenic brown and beige adipose tissues dissipate chemical energy as heat, and their thermogenic activities can combat obesity and diabetes. Herein the functional adaptations to cold of brown and beige adipose depots are examined using quantitative mitochondrial proteomics. We identify arginine/creatine metabolism as a beige adipose signature and demonstrate that creatine enhances respiration in beige-fat mitochondria when ADP is limiting. In murine beige fat, cold exposure stimulates mitochondrial creatine kinase activity and induces coordinated expression of genes associated with creatine metabolism. Pharmacological reduction of creatine levels decreases whole-body energy expenditure after administration of a β3-agonist and reduces beige and brown adipose metabolic rate. Genes of creatine metabolism are compensatorily induced when UCP1-dependent thermogenesis is ablated, and creatine reduction in Ucp1-deficient mice reduces core body temperature. These findings link a futile cycle of creatine metabolism to adipose tissue energy expenditure and thermal homeostasis. PAPERCLIP.
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