2011 Volume 34 Issue 8 Pages 1257-1263
To clarify the molecular mechanism of adipocyte differentiation, we previously isolated a novel gene, factor for adipocyte differentiation (fad) 158, whose expression was induced during the earliest stages of adipogenesis, and its product was localized to the endoplasmic reticulum. We found that the knockdown of fad158 expression prevented the differentiation of 3T3-L1 cells into adipocytes. In addition, over-expression of fad158 promoted the differentiation of NIH-3T3 cells, which do not usually differentiate into adipocytes. Although these findings strongly suggest that fad158 has a crucial role in regulating adipocyte differentiation, the physiological role of the gene is still unclear. In this study, we generated mice in which fad158 expression was deleted. The fad158-deficient mice did not show remarkable changes in body weight or the weight of white adipose tissue on a chow diet, but had significantly lower body weights and fat mass than wild-type mice when fed a high-fat diet. Furthermore, although the disruption of fad158 did not influence insulin sensitivity on the chow diet, it improved insulin resistance induced by the high-fat diet. These results indicate that fad158 is a key factor in the development of obesity and insulin resistance caused by a high-fat diet.