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Expression and activity of 20alpha-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase (AKR1C1) in abdominal subcutaneous and omental adipose tissue in women

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Charles C. Thomas
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We have examined the expression and activity of 20a-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase (20a-HSD) in abdominal adipose tissue in women. This recently-characterized enzyme from the aldoketoreductase 1C family (AKR1C1) is responsible for the conversion of progesterone into 20a-hydroxyprogesterone. Abdominal subcutaneous (SC) and omental (OM) adipose tissue biopsies were obtained from a sample of 32 women aged 47.7+-5.9 years (BMI: 27.6+-5.0 kg/m2 ) undergoing abdominal hysterectomies. Body composition and body fat distribution measurements were performed before the surgery by dual energy x-ray absorptiometry and computed tomography respectively. The expression of 20a-HSD was determined by real-time RT-PCR, and its activity was measured in whole tissue homogenates. Messenger RNA and activity of the enzyme were detected in both the SC and OM fat depots, the two measures being significantly higher in the SC compartment. Women characterized by a visceral adipose tissue area greater than or equal to 100 cm2 had an increased 20a-HSD conversion rate in their omental adipose tissue compared to women without visceral obesity (13.99+-2.07 vs. 7.92+-0.83 fmol/ug protein/24h, p<0.05). Accordingly, a positive correlation was found between omental adipose tissue 20a-HSD activity and computed tomography-measured visceral adipose tissue area (r=0.36, p<0.05). Significant positive correlations were also found between omental 20a-HSD activity and omental adipocyte diameter (r=0.49, p<0.05) and omental adipose tissue LPL activity (r=0.36, p=0.06). In conclusion, 20a-HSD activity and mRNA were detected in SC and OM adipose tissue in women, and omental 20a-hydroxylation of progesterone was highest in women with visceral obesity. Further studies are required to establish whether local conversion of progesterone may impact on the metabolism and function of adipocytes located within the abdominal cavity.
The Journal of clinical endocrinology and metabolism, Vol. 90(1), 264-270 (2005)
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Women , Abdominal obesity , Omental , Adipose tissue , Computed tomography , Progesterone , 20a-hydroxyprogesterone
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article de recherche