Adipose tissue is a dynamic endocrine organ secreting a variety of hormones that affect physiological functions within the central nervous system, cardiovascular system, reproductive, and immune systems. The endocrine role of avian adipose tissue remains enigmatic as many of the classical hormones found in mammalian adipose tissue have not been found in avians. This mini-review summarizes our current knowledge on avian adiponectin, one of the most abundant adipose tissue hormones, and its receptors. We cloned the genes encoding chicken adiponectin and its receptors, AdipoR1 and AdipoR2. Using anti-chicken adiponectin antibody, we found that chicken adipose tissue and plasma predominantly contain a unique polymer of adiponectin with a mass greater than 669. kDa, unlike mammalian adiponectin which is found as three distinct oligomers. Mass spectrometric analyses of chicken adiponectin revealed certain post-translational modifications that are likely to favor the unique multimerization of adiponectin in chickens. Unlike adiponectin, the nucleotide sequences of chicken AdipoR1- and AdipoR2 cDNA are highly similar to that of mammalian adiponectin receptors. Both adiponectin and adiponectin receptors are widely expressed in several tissues in the chicken. Herein, we review the unique biochemistry of adiponectin as well as expression of adiponectin and its receptors in the chicken. Future studies should focus on elucidating the role of adiponectin, AdipoR1, and AdipoR2 on metabolism, steroidogenesis, and adipose tissue remodeling during growth and reproduction in birds.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Animal Science and Zoology