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Fatty acid activation in thermogenic adipose tissue Molecular and cell biology of lipids

Steensels, Sandra, Ersoy, Baran A.
Biochimica et biophysica acta 2019 v.1864 no.1 pp. 79-90
acyl coenzyme A, adipocytes, adipose tissue, beta oxidation, carbohydrates, enzymatic reactions, enzyme activity, esterification, fatty acids, heat production, ligases, lipolysis, metabolic diseases, mitochondria, triacylglycerols
Channeling carbohydrates and fatty acids to thermogenic tissues, including brown and beige adipocytes, have garnered interest as an approach for the management of obesity-related metabolic disorders. Mitochondrial fatty acid oxidation (β-oxidation) is crucial for the maintenance of thermogenesis. Upon cellular fatty acid uptake or following lipolysis from triglycerides (TG), fatty acids are esterified to coenzyme A (CoA) to form active acyl-CoA molecules. This enzymatic reaction is essential for their utilization in β-oxidation and thermogenesis. The activation and deactivation of fatty acids are regulated by two sets of enzymes called acyl-CoA synthetases (ACS) and acyl-CoA thioesterases (ACOT), respectively. The expression levels of ACS and ACOT family members in thermogenic tissues will determine the substrate availability for β-oxidation, and consequently the thermogenic capacity. Although the role of the majority of ACS and ACOT family members in thermogenesis remains unclear, recent proceedings link the enzymatic activities of ACS and ACOT family members to metabolic disorders and thermogenesis. Elucidating the contributions of specific ACS and ACOT family members to trafficking of fatty acids towards thermogenesis may reveal novel targets for modulating thermogenic capacity and treating metabolic disorders.