, Volume 65, Issue 4, pp 387-395

Influence of dietary macronutrient composition on adiposity and cellularity of different fat depots in Wistar rats

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The aim of this study was to investigate the role of dietary macronutrient content on adiposity parameters and adipocyte hypertrophy/hyperplasia in subcutaneous and visceral fat depots from Wistar rats using combined histological and computational approaches. For this purpose, male Wistar rats were distributed into 4 groups and were assigned to different nutritional interventions: Control group (chow diet); high-fat group, HF (60% E from fat); high-fat-sucrose group, HFS (45% E from fat and 17% from sucrose); and high-sucrose group, HS (42% E from sucrose). At day 35, rats were sacrificed, blood was collected, tissues were weighed and fragments of different fat depots were kept for histological analyses with the new softwareAdiposoft. Rats fed with HF, HFS and HS diets increased significantly body weight and total body fat against Control rats, being metabolic impairments more pronounced on HS rats than in the other groups. Cellularity analyses usingAdiposoft revealed that retroperitoneal adipose tissue is histologically different than mesenteric and subcutaneous ones, in relation to bigger adipocytes. The subcutaneous fat pad was the most sensitive to the diet, presenting adipocyte hypertrophy induced by HF diet and adipocyte hyperplasia induced by HS diet. The mesenteric fat pad had a similar but attenuated response in comparison to the subcutaneous adipose tissue, while retroperitoneal fat pad only presented adipocyte hyperplasia induced by the HS diet intake after 35 days of intervention. These findings provide new insights into the role of macronutrients in the development of hyperplastic obesity, which is characterized by the severity of the clinical features. Finally, a new tool for analyzing histological adipose samples is presented.