Engineering Functional Vascularized Beige Adipose Tissue from Microvascular Fragments of Models of Healthy and Type II Diabetes Conditions
Engineered beige adipose tissues could be used for screening therapeutic strategies or as a direct treatment for obesity and metabolic disease. Microvascular fragments are vessel structures that can be directly isolated from adipose tissue and may contain cells capable of differentiation into thermogenic, or beige, adipocytes. In this study, culture conditions were investigated to engineer three-dimensional, vascularized functional beige adipose tissue using microvascular fragments isolated from both healthy animals and a model of type II diabetes (T2D). Vascularized beige adipose tissues were engineered and exhibited increased expression of beige adipose markers, enhanced function, and improved cellular respiration. While microvascular fragments isolated from both lean and diabetic models were able to generate functional tissues, differences were observed in regard to vessel assembly and tissue function. This study introduces an approach that could be employed to engineer vascularized beige adipose tissues from a single, potentially autologous source of cells.