Scientific publications

PRDM16: the interconvertible adipo-myocyte switch

Mar 13, 2009 | Magazine: Trends in Cell Biology

Gema Frühbeck (1,2), Pilar Sesma (3) and María A. Burrell (3)

Both brown and white adipocytes were previously considered to be derived from the same precursor cell, despite being histologically and functionally different.

However, a recent study shows that overexpression of the transcriptional regulator positive regulatory domain containing 16 (PRDM16) determines the development of brown adipocytes from a progenitor that expresses myoblast markers. Surprisingly, loss of PRDM16 from these precursors does not lead to white adipocyte differentiation.

Thus, PRDM16 controls a bidirectional cell fate switch between skeletal myoblasts and brown adipocytes.

CITATION  Trends Cell Biol. 2009 Apr;19(4):141-6