Fluoxetine decreases the proliferation and adipogenic differentiation of human adipose-derived stem cells

Bo Kyung Sun, Ji Hye Kim, Joon Seok Choi, Sung Joo Hwang, Jong Hyuk Sung

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19 Citations (Scopus)


Fluoxetine was originally developed as an antidepressant, but it has also been used to treat obesity. Although the anti-appetite effect of fluoxetine is well-documented, its potential effects on human adipose-derived stem cells (ASCs) or mature adipocytes have not been investigated. Therefore, we investigated the mechanisms underlying the inhibitory effects of fluoxetine on the proliferation of ASCs. We also investigated its inhibitory effect on adipogenic differentiation. Fluoxetine significantly decreased ASC proliferation, and signal transduction PCR array analysis showed that it increased expression of autophagy-related genes. In addition, fluoxetine up-regulated SQSTM1 and LC3B protein expression as detected by western blotting and immunofluorescence. The autophagy inhibitor, 3-methyladenine (3-MA), significantly attenuated fluoxetine-mediated effects on ASC proliferation and SQSTM1/LC3B expression. In addition, 3-MA decreased the mRNA expression of two autophagy-related genes, beclin-1 and Atg7, in ASCs. Fluoxetine also significantly inhibited lipid accumulation and down-regulated the levels of PPAR-γ and C/EBP-α in ASCs. Collectively, these results indicate that fluoxetine decreases ASC proliferation and adipogenic differentiation. This is the first in vitro evidence that fluoxetine can reduce fat accumulation by inhibiting ASC proliferation and differentiation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)16655-16668
Number of pages14
JournalInternational journal of molecular sciences
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 2015 Jul 22

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2015, by the authors.

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Catalysis
  • Molecular Biology
  • Spectroscopy
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
  • Organic Chemistry
  • Inorganic Chemistry


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