Adipose tissue macrophages: Regulators of adipose tissue immunometabolism during obesity

Sierra A. Nance, Lindsey Muir, Carey Lumeng


Adipose tissue macrophages (ATMs) are a well characterized regulator of adipose tissue inflammatory tone. Previously defined by the M1 vs M2 classification, we now have a better understanding of ATM diversity that departs from the old paradigm and reports a spectrum of ATM function and phenotypes in both brown and white adipose tissue.

Scope of Review

This review provides an updated overview of ATM activation and function, ATM diversity in humans and rodents, and novel ATM functions that contribute to metabolic homeostasis and disease.

Major Conclusions

While the paradigm that resident ATMs predominate in the lean state and obesity leads to the accumulation of lipid-associated and inflammatory ATMs still broadly remains rigorously supported, the details of this model continue to be refined and single cell data provide new insight into ATM subtypes and states.