Date of Award

January 2015

Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Animal Science

First Advisor

Shihuan Kuang

Committee Member 1

Paul Collodi

Committee Member 2

Ourania Andrisani

Committee Member 3

Henry Chang


Evolutionarily unprepared for high caloric diets and sedentary lifestyles, humans are now unprecedentedly susceptible to obesity and its associated metabolic disorders. Obesity is resulted from malfunction of the overloaded white adipocytes, which are the primary default storage sites of energy surplus. Another two types of adipocytes can also be found in human: beige and brown adipocytes. In opposite to white adipocytes, beige and brown adipocytes ameliorate obesity by burning lipids for thermogenesis. Thus, an increase in beige/brown adipocyte content in adipose tissue, termed browning would raise energy expenditure and reduce adiposity.