White adipocyte vascular endothelial growth factor: Regulation by insulin

Academic Article


  • White adipose tissue from rats was examined for insulin-responsive vascular endothelial growth factor 165 (VEGF) secretion and mRNA expression. When separated into it constituent fat vs. stromal-vascular cells using collagenase digestion methods, only the adipocytes (or whole fat tissue) responded to physiological insulin concentrations by doubling VEGF release over 4 and 24 h in culture. Adipocyte VEGF mRNA expression increased similarly. Several adipose depots were tested. Although omental fat cells had the highest rates of VEGF release, the differences were not significant. Insulin-stimulated VEGF release was mediated in part via PI3K, but not PKC. Additional hormones/agents were tested, including steroids, leptin, an adenosine analog, and norepinephrine. Only the latter compound increased VEGF production, and this effect was mediated by adenylate cyclase. Adjusting the incubation glucose concentration between 0-20 mM did not alter adipocyte VEGF release. An experimental mimic of hypoxia, CoCl2, also increased adipocyte VEGF, and this effect was additive with 100 nM insulin. These studies demonstrate that physiological insulin concentrations stimulate VEGF formation and expression in cultured rodent white adipocytes. Although the biological significance of this observation remains to be determined, if white adipocyte-derived VEGF has paracrine or systemic endocrine actions, these might hypothetically impact on adipose expansion or the vascular comorbidities of obesity.
  • Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Mick GJ; Wang X; McCormick K
  • Start Page

  • 948
  • End Page

  • 953
  • Volume

  • 143
  • Issue

  • 3