Leukocyte migration in adipose tissue of mice null for ICAM-1 and Mac-1 adhesion receptors

Rebecca L. Robker, Robert G. Collins, Arthur L. Beaudet, Harry J. Mersmann, C. Wayne Smith

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Objective: To determine whether the leukocyte adhesion receptors ICAM-1 and Mac-1, regulators of immune cell migration, have an intrinsic role within adipose tissue by 1) analyzing the expression of ICAM-1 in adipose tissue, 2) identifying leukocyte populations within adipose tissue, and 3) determining whether ICAM-1 and Mac-1 mutant mice exhibit abnormal numbers of adipose tissue leukocytes. Research Methods and Procedures: Wild-type, ICAM-1-/-, and Mac-1-/- mice were fed a long-term high-fat diet. ICAM-1 expression was analyzed by Northern blot and immunohistochemistry. Leukocytes within adipose tissue were identified by immunohistochemistry and flow cytometry. Results: ICAM-1 was expressed in adipose tissue and localized to the vascular endothelium. Macrophages and lymphocytes were prevalent within the stromal-vascular cell fraction of adipose tissue, and gender-specific differences were observed, with adipose tissue from female mice containing significantly more macrophages than tissue from male mice. Numbers of leukocytes in ICAM-1-/- and Mac-1-/- mice were not different from wild-types, however, indicating that these adhesion receptors are not required for leukocyte migration into adipose tissue. Discussion: Our results documented leukocyte populations within adipose tissue, which may be involved in the development of heightened inflammation that is characteristic of obesity.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)936-940
Number of pages5
JournalObesity Research
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2004
Externally publishedYes


  • Flow cytometry
  • Gender
  • Inflammation
  • Lymphocyte
  • Macrophage

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