Abreu-Vieira, Gustavo., Fischer W, Alexander., Mattsson, Charlotta,. de Jong, Jasper,. Shabalina, Irina., Rydén, Mikael., Laurencikiene, Jurga., Arner, Peter., Cannon, Barbara., Nedergaard, Jan., Petrovic, Natasa.

Corresponding author: Natasa Petrovic 

Cidea improves the metabolic profile through expansion of adipose tissue

Nature Communications 6, Article number: 7433 doi:10.1038/ncomms8433


In humans, Cidea (cell death-inducing DNA fragmentation factor alpha-like effector A) is highly but variably expressed in white fat, and expression correlates with metabolic health. Here we generate transgenic mice expressing human Cidea in adipose tissues (aP2-hCidea mice) and show that Cidea is mechanistically associated with a robust increase in adipose tissue expandability. Under humanized conditions (thermoneutrality, mature age and prolonged exposure to high-fat diet), aP2-hCidea mice develop a much more pronounced obesity than their wild-type littermates. Remarkably, the malfunctioning of visceral fat normally caused by massive obesity is fully overcome—perilipin 1 and Akt expression are preserved, tissue degradation is prevented, macrophage accumulation is decreased and adiponectin expression remains high. Importantly, the aP2-hCidea mice display enhanced insulin sensitivity. Our data establish a functional role for Cidea and suggest that, in humans, the association between Cidea levels in white fat and metabolic health is not only correlative but also causative.