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Open Access Highly Accessed Review

Fat body, fat pad and adipose tissues in invertebrates and vertebrates: the nexus

Odunayo Ibraheem Azeez12*, Roy Meintjes1 and Joseph Panashe Chamunorwa1

Author Affiliations

1 Department of Anatomy and Physiology, Faculty of Veterinary Science, University of Pretoria, Private Bag X04, Onderstepoort 0110 Pretoria, South Africa

2 Department of Veterinary Physiology, Biochemistry and Pharmacology, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, University of Ibadan, Ibadan, Nigeria

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Lipids in Health and Disease 2014, 13:71  doi:10.1186/1476-511X-13-71

Published: 23 April 2014

Abstract

The fat body in invertebrates was shown to participate in energy storage and homeostasis, apart from its other roles in immune mediation and protein synthesis to mention a few. Thus, sharing similar characteristics with the liver and adipose tissues in vertebrates. However, vertebrate adipose tissue or fat has been incriminated in the pathophysiology of metabolic disorders due to its role in production of pro-inflammatory cytokines. This has not been reported in the insect fat body. The link between the fat body and adipose tissue was examined in this review with the aim of determining the principal factors responsible for resistance to inflammation in the insect fat body. This could be the missing link in the prevention of metabolic disorders in vertebrates, occasioned by obesity.

Keywords:
Fat body; Adipose tissue; and Metabolic syndrome