Effects of adipocyte-derived factors on the adrenal cortex

Hiroki Shimada, Erika Noro, Susumu Suzuki, Jun Sakamoto, Ikuko Sato, Rehana Parvin, Atsushi Yokoyama, Akira Sugawara

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


Background and Objective: Obesity is highly complicated by hypertension and hyperglycemia. In particular, it has been proposed that obesity-related hypertension is caused by adipocyte-derived factors that are recognized as undetermined proteins secreted from adipocytes. Adipocyte-derived factors have been known to be related to aldosterone secretion in the adrenal gland. So far, Wnt proteins, CTRP-1, VLDL, LDL, HDL and leptin have been demonstrated to stimulate aldosterone secretion. In contrast, it has not yet been clarified whether adipocyte-derived factors also affect adrenal cortisol secretion. Methods and Results: In the present study, we investigated the effect of adipocyte-derived factors on cortisol synthase gene CYP11B1 mRNA expression in vitro study using adrenocortical carcinoma H295R cells and mouse fibroblast 3T3-L1cells. Interestingly, adipocyte-derived factors were demonstrated to have the ability to stimulate CYP11B1 mRNA expression. Conclusion: Since CYP11B1 is well known as a limiting enzyme of cortisol synthesis, our study suggests that adipocyte-derived factors may stimulate cortisol secretion, as well as aldosterone secretion. Taken together, adipocyte-derived factors may be the cause of metabolic syndrome due to their stimulating effects on aldosterone/cortisol secretion. Therefore, the innovation of novel drugs against them may possibly be a new approach against metabolic syndrome.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2-6
Number of pages5
JournalCurrent Molecular Pharmacology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2020


  • Adipocyte
  • Adrenal
  • CYP11B1
  • CYP11B2
  • Cortisol
  • Obesity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Medicine
  • Pharmacology
  • Drug Discovery


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