Molecular and Cellular Biochemistry

, Volume 254, Issue 1–2, pp 55–59 | Cite as

Enhanced glycerol 3-phosphate dehydrogenase activity in adipose tissue of obese humans

  • Julian Swierczynski
  • Lidia Zabrocka
  • Elzbieta Goyke
  • Sylwia Raczynska
  • Walenty Adamonis
  • Zbigniew Sledzinski


The primary purpose of this investigation was to determine whether adipose tissue glycerol 3-phosphate dehydrogenase activity is associated with human obesity. The data presented in this paper indicate that the glycerol 3-phosphate dehydrogenase activity in adipose tissue from morbidly obese subjects is approximately 2-fold higher than from lean individuals. Moreover, positive correlation between adipose tissue glycerol 3-phosphate dehydrogenase activity and body mass index (BMI) (r = 0.5; p < 0.01) was found. In contrast, the adipose tissue fatty acid synthase (FAS) and ATP-citrate lyase (ACL) activities in morbidly obese patients are significantly lower than in lean subjects. Furthermore, negative correlation between adipose tissue FAS activity and BMI (r = –0.3; p < 0.05) as well as between ACL activity and BMI (r = –0.3; p < 0.05) was found.

These data indicate that elevated glycerol 3-phosphate dehydrogenase might contribute to the increase of triacylglycerol (TAG) synthesis in obese subjects, however, fatty acids necessary for glycerol 3-phosphate esterification must be derived (because of lower FAS and ACL activities) mainly from TAG in circulating lipoproteins formed in liver (VLDL), and/or from the intake with food (chylomicrons).

The conclusion is, that the enhanced activity of glycerol 3-phosphate dehydrogenase, and hence the generation of more glycerol 3-phosphate in adipose tissue offers a novel explanation for increased TAG production in adipose tissue of obese subjects.

ATP-citrate lyase fatty acid synthase glycerol 3-phosphate dehydrogenase human obesity 


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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 2003

Authors and Affiliations

  • Julian Swierczynski
    • 1
  • Lidia Zabrocka
    • 2
  • Elzbieta Goyke
    • 3
  • Sylwia Raczynska
    • 4
  • Walenty Adamonis
    • 4
  • Zbigniew Sledzinski
    • 4
  1. 1.Department of BiochemistryMedical University of GdanskGdanskPoland
  2. 2.Department of Pharmaceutical BiochemistryMedical University of GdanskGdanskPoland
  3. 3.Department of BiochemistryMedical University of GdanskGdanskPoland
  4. 4.Department of General Surgery and TransplantologyMedical University of GdanskGdanskPoland

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