Fat-bone interaction within the bone marrow milieu: Impact on hematopoiesis and systemic energy metabolism.
Year of Publication
2018 Mar 14
<p>The relationship between fat, bone and systemic metabolism is a growing area of scientific interest. Marrow adipose tissue is a well-recognized component of the bone marrow milieu and is metabolically distinct from current established subtypes of adipose tissue. Despite recent advances, the functional significance of marrow adipose tissue is still not clearly delineated. Bone and fat cells share a common mesenchymal stem cell (MSC) within the bone marrow, and hormones and transcription factors such as growth hormone, leptin, and peroxisomal proliferator-activated receptor γ influence MSC differentiation into osteoblasts or adipocytes. MSC osteogenic potential is more vulnerable than adipogenic potential to radiation and chemotherapy, and this confers a risk for an abnormal fat-bone axis in survivors following cancer therapy and bone marrow transplantation. This review provides a summary of data from animal and human studies describing the relationship between marrow adipose tissue and hematopoiesis, bone mineral density, bone strength, and metabolic function. The significance of marrow adiposity in other metabolic disorders such as osteoporosis, diabetes mellitus, and estrogen and growth hormone deficiency are also discussed. We conclude that marrow adipose tissue is an active endocrine organ with important metabolic functions contributing to bone energy maintenance, osteogenesis, bone remodeling, and hematopoiesis. Future studies on the metabolic role of marrow adipose tissue may provide the critical insight necessary for selecting targeted therapeutic interventions to improve altered hematopoiesis and augment skeletal remodeling in cancer survivors.</p>