Role of the natriuretic peptide system in lipogenesis/lipolysis

P. Dessì-Fulgheri, R. Sarzani, A. Rappelli

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Aim: There is recent evidence that the natriuretic peptide (NP) system promotes adipose tissue lipolysis in primates. This effect is mediated by the interaction of NP with its active receptors through guanylyl cyclase activation and cGMP production. This review will briefly focus on the new aspects of NP pathophysiology in man. Data synthesis: NP receptors have been described in rodent adipocytes, and the expression of their mRNA is found in human adipose tissue together with high level of ANP binding sites. In isolated fat cells, atrial natriuretic peptide (ANP) and brain natriuretic peptide (BNP) were able to stimulate lipolysis as much as isoproterenol, a non-selective β-adrenergic receptor agonist, whereas C-type natriuretic peptide (CNP) had the lowest lipolytic effect. The potent lipolytic effect of NP has also been confirmed in samples of abdominal adipose tissue from healthy subjects. The potency order of the lipolytic effect (ANP >BNP >CNP) and ANP-induced cGMP production supported the presence of type A natriuretic peptide receptor in human fat cells. The effect of NP on lipid metabolism is confirmed by the fact that intravenous ANP infusion is followed by plasma NEFA and glycerol concentration increase (reflecting lipid mobilisation). Conclusions: The NP system seems to play an important role in lipid metabolism, possibly affecting the pathophysiology of obesity and obesity-related disorders, such hypertension. Further studies, however, are needed to completely establish the mechanisms involved in NP-induced lipolysis and the real relevance of this new pathway specific of primates. Nutr Metab Cardiovasc Dis (2003) 13: 244-249

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)244-249
Number of pages6
JournalNutrition, Metabolism and Cardiovascular Diseases
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2003


  • Adipose tissue
  • Hypertension
  • Lipolysis
  • Natriuretic peptide receptors
  • Natriuretic peptides
  • Obesity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Food Science
  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Nutrition and Dietetics


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