Persistence of UCP1 Expression in Adipose Microtissue Engineered From Microvascular Fragments
Beige adipose tissue engineering represents an advanced and promising area of research within the field of metabolic health, providing a potential avenue for combatting obesity and associated metabolic disorders. However, the sustainable function of engineered beige adipose tissue remains unclear. Microvascular fragments (MVF) can be isolated in large numbers from white adipose tissue, and the resident cells possess the inherent capability to differentiate into cells that express uncoupling protein 1 (UCP1), a primary marker of brown and beige adipocytes. The aims of this study are to engineer an in vitro adipose microtissue from MVFs in 3D culture using fibrin-based hydrogel scaffold and investigate 1) the persistence of UCP1 expression by these engineered microtissues and 2) the ability of restimulate UCP1 expression after the removal of beige adipogenic factors. This study provides new insight into the long-term potential of engineered beige adipose tissues. At the experimental time points, gene expression analysis was performed by qPCR for the ability of adipogenesis and thermogenesis, histological analysis was performed by staining with different dyes under confocal microscope. The results showed that MVFs could successfully be induced to express beige adipose markers, including UCP1 in an in vitro three-dimensional fibrin-based hydrogel to be used as a model of beige adipose tissue. UCP1 expression in adipose microtissues decreased after 13 days of exposure to beige adipogenic factors, even so, the adipose microtissue engineered from MVFs could still be restimulated to express UCP1 following periods of culture in the absence of beige adipogenic factors, and it was repeatable.