Immune and stromal cell characterization of abdominal adipose deposits

McKendrick, Beth (2017). Immune and stromal cell characterization of abdominal adipose deposits. University of Birmingham. M.Sc.

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Type 2 immunity has been recently shown to play a key role in adipocyte homeostasis, and a relatively novel cell type, group 2 innate lymphoid cells (ILC2s), are instrumental in many homeostatic pathways in adipose tissue. A novel lymphoid structure, fat-associated lymphoid clusters (FALCs), have been recently identified in adipose deposits but their broader function(s) in adipocyte homeostasis are unknown, and it is unclear what the most appropriate adipose deposit might be for further study. The aim of this investigation was to characterize the FALCS, ILC populations, and IL-33-producing stromal populations in three types of adipose tissue, to understand which might be the most appropriate for further study into adipocyte homeostasis. The results reveal that the most commonly studied adipose deposit (gonadal fat) has similar characteristics to the deposit that was hypothesized to be more physiologically appropriate (mesenteric fat). Subtle differences are apparent, including differing ILC2 populations, but the body of evidence is not sufficient to confidently suggest that mesenteric fat should replace gonadal as the in vivo model tissue of choice for obesity studies. However, omental fat does fulfill the criteria as an appropriate candidate tissue to explore questions around the role(s) of FALC in metabolic homeostasis, because of relatively high number of FALCs, ILC2s, and IL-33+ stromal cells. In addition, an improved imaging technique has been developed to allow the exploration of immune cell localization within the FALCs - critical for any future studies into FALC function in metabolic homeostasis.

Type of Work: Thesis (Masters by Research > M.Sc.)
Award Type: Masters by Research > M.Sc.
College/Faculty: Colleges (2008 onwards) > College of Medical & Dental Sciences
School or Department: Institute of Immunology and Immunotherapy
Funders: Medical Research Council
Subjects: Q Science > QR Microbiology > QR180 Immunology


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