Published online Nov 15, 2018. doi: 10.4239/wjd.v9.i11.195
Peer-review started: July 19, 2018
First decision: August 9, 2018
Revised: October 8, 2018
Accepted: October 24, 2018
Article in press: October 24, 2018
Published online: November 15, 2018
Core tip: Bahrami-Nejad et al examined pre-adipocytes for their ability to differentiate into fat cells in response to hormonal stimuli that were presented either in a pulsatile manner, mimicking circadian rhythms, or delivered continuously. These experiments revealed that adipocyte differentiation program, made up of slow and fast feedback circuits, was able to distinguish between the oscillating and continuous hormonal signals. The authors showed that pre-adipocytes apparently used the fast, positive feedback network to reject the oscillating hormonal cues. In contrast, if delivered continuously, similar strength glucocorticoids impinged on the slow positive feedback circuit to trigger maximal differentiation of pre-adipocytes into bone fide fat cells. The pulsatile vs continuous hormone stimuli were similarly discriminated in vivo since mice receiving glucocorticoids in a non-oscillating manner for 21 d elicited increased accumulation of subcutaneous and visceral fat. These data elucidate a potential mechanism underling the development of obesity associated with chronic stress or Cushing’s disease.