The future of brown adipose tissues in the treatment of type 2 diabetes

P. Schrauwen*, W.D. van Marken Lichtenbelt, B.M. Spiegelman

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalComment/Letter to the editorAcademicpeer-review

28 Citations (Web of Science)
22 Downloads (Pure)


The recent recognition that humans possess active depots of brown adipose tissue has boosted the interest in this tissue as a potential target for the prevention and treatment of obesity and related metabolic disorders. Furthermore, it was also revealed that brown adipose tissue (BAT) in humans may consist of so-called beige or brite adipocytes. So far, cold exposure is recognised as the strongest activator of BAT in humans, but there is much ongoing research focused on finding alternative activators of BAT. The consequences of long-term BAT activation and/or cold exposure on metabolic health are still unknown, and this represents an area of intensive research. This is one of a series of commentaries under the banner '50 years forward', giving personal opinions on future perspectives in diabetes, to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Diabetologia (1965-2015).
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1704-1707
Number of pages4
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2015


  • Brown adipose tissue
  • Cold-induced thermogenesis
  • Diabetes
  • Energy turnover
  • MICE

Cite this