Sex Affects Regional Variations in Subcutaneous Adipose Tissue T Cells but not Macrophages in Adults with Obesity

Jessica Murphy, Kerri Z. Delaney, Vi Dam, Bjorn T. Tam, Natalie Khor, Michael A. Tsoukas, José A. Morais, Sylvia Santosa*

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articlepeer-review

    3 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    Objective: The inflammatory environment in lower-body subcutaneous adipose tissue (SAT) has been largely unexplored. This study aimed to examine the effects of region (upper body vs. lower body) and sex on SAT immune cell profiles in young adults with obesity.

    Methods: Abdominal (AB) and femoral (FEM) SAT was collected from 12 males (mean [SEM] age = 30.8 [1.4] years; mean [SEM] BMI = 34.1 [1.1] kg/m2) and 22 females (mean [SEM] age = 30.6 [0.6] years; mean [SEM] BMI = 34.0 [0.7] kg/m2) with obesity via needle aspiration. Flow cytometry was used to quantify macrophage (CD68+) and T-cell (CD3+) subpopulations in the stromovascular fraction of each SAT region.

    Results: Females had a greater proportion of most T-cell types (CD3+CD4+CD45RA+, CD3+CD4+CD45RA−, and CD3+CD8+CD45RA+) in FEM compared with AB SAT, while males had similar proportions in both regions. Regardless of sex, the M1-like macrophage population (CD68+CD206−) was proportionally higher in AB SAT than in FEM SAT.

    Conclusions: Results showed that T-cell populations vary by SAT region in females but not males. Both sexes, however, have proportionately more proinflammatory macrophages in upper-body than in lower-body SAT. It remains to be seen how these unique immune cell profiles in males and females with obesity contribute to adipose tissue inflammation and metabolic disease risk.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)2310-2314
    Number of pages5
    JournalObesity
    Volume28
    Issue number12
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - Dec 2020

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