Masonic Medical Research Institute develops a new technology for studying brown fat

UTICA, New York – Brown fat, also known as brown adipose tissue (BAT), is a special type of fat that helps maintain body temperature. Most importantly, brown fat is a biological fuel that is linked to the rate of metabolism and fat storage. In a recent publication, Dr. Zhiqiang Lin, Associate Professor of Masonic Medical Research Institute (MMRI) and senior author of the manuscript, has successfully developed a novel method to enrich brown fat cell isolation for use in biochemical studies. “When we face a scientific setback, we simply begin to address potential hurdles,” said Dr. Lin. Among them was the need to develop a better method for isolating these fat cells.

BAT consists of multiple cell types, which makes it difficult to specifically isolate brown fat cells without contamination by other cell groups in the tissues. Before Dr. Lin’s research, there was no effective way to do this. “This technology will allow the laboratory and laboratories of other researchers to study the relationship between brown fat cells and other cell types in BAT,” said Dr. Lin.

Posted in JoVE He also creates experimental technology videos to help educate the scientific community about the process ( Team of JoVE He visited the institute to record a demonstration of this technique by Steve Negron, a research assistant in Lynn’s lab and first author of the manuscript. Additional authors of the manuscript include Dr. Ping Shu, a postdoctoral fellow in the Contardes Laboratory at the MMRI Institute. The manuscript titled “Isolation of brown adipocytes from bipolar brown adipose tissue for gene and protein expression analysis”, and the corresponding video can be found at doi: 10.3791 / 62332.


MMRI is dedicated to scientific research that improves health and quality of life for everyone. We strive to conduct high-quality research aimed at developing a deep understanding of diseases and generating innovative treatments and therapies. For more information on MMRI, please visit

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