Inside out: Bone marrow adipose tissue as a source of circulating adiponectin

William Cawthorn, Erica Scheller, Aaron Burr, Ormond A. MacDougald

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The adipocyte-derived hormone adiponectin mediates beneficial cardiometabolic effects, and hypoadiponectinemia is a biomarker for increased metabolic and cardiovascular risk. Indeed, circulating adiponectin decreases in obesity and insulin-resistance, likely because of impaired production from white adipose tissue (WAT). Conversely, lean states such as caloric restriction (CR) are characterized by hyperadiponectinemia, even without increased adiponectin production from WAT. The reasons underlying this paradox have remained elusive, but our recent research suggests that CR-associated hyperadiponectinemia derives from an unexpected source: bone marrow adipose tissue (MAT). Herein, we elaborate on this surprising discovery, including further discussion of potential mechanisms influencing adiponectin production from MAT; additional evidence both for and against our conclusions; and observations suggesting that the relationship between MAT and adiponectin might extend beyond CR. While many questions remain, the burgeoning study of MAT promises to reveal further key insights into MAT biology, both as a source of adiponectin and beyond.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)251-269
Number of pages19
Issue number3
Early online date22 Mar 2016
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jul 2016


  • Adiponectin
  • bone marrow adipose tissue
  • caloric restriction
  • obesity


Dive into the research topics of 'Inside out: Bone marrow adipose tissue as a source of circulating adiponectin'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this