Short-term cooling increases serum angiopoietin-like 4 levels in healthy lean men

Kimberly J. Nahon*, Geerte Hoeke, Leontine E.H. Bakker, Ingrid M. Jazet, Jimmy F.P. Berbée, Sander Kersten, Patrick C.N. Rensen, Mariëtte R. Boon

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Cold exposure enhances sympathetic outflow to peripheral tissues, thereby stimulating intracellular lipolysis in white adipose tissue and increasing the lipoprotein lipase-dependent uptake and combustion of triglyceride-derived fatty acids (FAs) by brown adipose tissue. Angiopoietin-like 4 (ANGPTL4) inhibits lipoprotein lipase and can be regulated by cold exposure, at least in mice. Objective: In the present study, we examined the effect of short-term mild cooling on serum ANGPTL4 levels in healthy lean men of White Caucasian and South Asian descent. Methods: Healthy, lean White Caucasian (n = 12) and South Asian (n = 12) men were exposed to an individualized cooling protocol for 2 hours. Serum ANGPTL4 levels were measured before and after cooling, and its relation with previously measured parameters (ie, free fatty acid [FFA] levels, body fat percentage, and resting energy expenditure) was determined. Results: Short-term cooling increased ANGPTL4 levels (+17%, P < .001). Thermoneutral ANGPTL4 levels positively correlated with FFA levels (R 2 = 0.250, P < .05) and body fat percentage (R 2 = 0.338, P < .05). Furthermore, ANGPTL4 negatively correlated with resting energy expenditure (R 2 = 0.235, P < .05). The relative increase in ANGPTL4 levels was higher in White Caucasians compared with South Asians (25 ± 4 vs 9 ± 4%, P < .05). Conclusion: Short-term cooling increases ANGPTL4 levels in healthy lean men. We anticipate that FFA liberated from white adipose tissue during cooling increases ANGPTL4 to limit uptake of triglyceride-derived FA by this tissue.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)56-61
JournalJournal of Clinical Lipidology
Issue number1
Early online date1 Nov 2017
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2018


  • Angiopoietin-like 4
  • Brown adipose tissue
  • Cold exposure
  • South Asians
  • Sympathetic nervous system

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    Nahon, K. J., Hoeke, G., Bakker, L. E. H., Jazet, I. M., Berbée, J. F. P., Kersten, S., Rensen, P. C. N., & Boon, M. R. (2018). Short-term cooling increases serum angiopoietin-like 4 levels in healthy lean men. Journal of Clinical Lipidology, 12(1), 56-61.