Permissive action of glucocorticoids on catecholamine-induced lipolysis: direct "in vitro" effects on the fat cell beta-adrenoreceptor-coupled-adenylate cyclase system

Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 1988 Jun 16;153(2):489-97. doi: 10.1016/s0006-291x(88)81121-5.


Exposure of adipose tissue fragments to dexamethasone leads to enhanced lipolytic and cyclic AMP responses of isolated fat cells to isoproterenol. This permissive effect of the steroid is dose-dependent, prevented by the glucocorticoid receptor antagonist RU 38486, maximum after 48 h exposure to 10 nM dexamethasone and affects only the amplitude of the maximal response (+50%). Exposure to dexamethasone also induces an increase in both the number of beta-adrenergic receptors (+30%), and the adenylate cyclase-catalytic activity (+64%) and - responses to GTP (+114%) and isoproterenol (+55%). These data strongly suggest that the permissive effect of glucocorticoids towards lipolysis "in vivo" results at least in part from a glucocorticoid-receptor mediated action of these hormones on the fat cell membranous components involved in the beta-adrenergic control of lipolysis.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adenylyl Cyclases / physiology*
  • Adipose Tissue / drug effects
  • Adipose Tissue / metabolism*
  • Animals
  • Colforsin / pharmacology
  • Cyclic AMP / biosynthesis*
  • Dexamethasone / pharmacology*
  • Estrenes / pharmacology
  • GTP-Binding Proteins / physiology
  • Isoproterenol / pharmacology
  • Lipid Mobilization / drug effects*
  • Male
  • Manganese / pharmacology
  • Mifepristone
  • Rats
  • Receptors, Adrenergic, beta / metabolism*


  • Estrenes
  • Receptors, Adrenergic, beta
  • Colforsin
  • Mifepristone
  • Manganese
  • Dexamethasone
  • Cyclic AMP
  • GTP-Binding Proteins
  • Adenylyl Cyclases
  • Isoproterenol