Objective: To investigate how long-term treatment with dexamethasone affects energy expenditure and adiposity in mice and whether this is influenced by feeding on a high fat diet (HFD). Design and Methods: Mice were placed on a HFD for 2 weeks and started on dexamethasone at 5mg/kg every other day during the next 7 weeks. Results: Treatment with dexamethasone increased body fat, an effect that was more pronounced in the animals kept on HFD; dexamethasone treatment also worsened liver steatosis caused by the HFD. At the same time, treatment with dexamethasone lowered the RQ in chow-fed animals and slowed nightly metabolic rate in the animals kept on HFD. In addition, the acute VO2 acceleration in response to β3 adrenergic-stimulation was significantly limited in the dexamethasone-treated animals, as a result of marked decrease in UCP-1 mRNA observed in the BAT of these animals. Conclusions: Long-term treatment with dexamethasone in a mouse model of diet-induced obesity decreases BAT thermogenesis and exaggerates adiposity and liver steatosis.

Dexamethasone reduces energy expenditure and increases susceptibility to diet-induced obesity in mice.

Poggioli R, Ueta CB, E Drigo RA, Castillo M, Fonseca TL, Bianco AC. Obesity (Silver Spring). September, 2013. PMID: 23408649.

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