We have recently identified a key metabolic pathway that regulate and drive the activation of thermogenically competent brown fat in mice and humans. Through whole genome expression profiling, metabolomics, biochemical, physiological and cell biology approaches, we surprisingly found that de novo lipogenesis is the most up-regulated metabolic pathway during BAT activation. Mechanistically, this process requires AKT signaling through a process that seems to require the activity of the transcription factor ChREBP.

Now we are studying the signaling and transcriptional mechanisms associated to this phenomenon in brown and white fats by using tissue specific genetically modified mice and cell lines.