News & Events

Fatima Rivas, Ph.D.

Posted on March 18, 2022


Date - March 18, 2022
1:00 pm - 2:00 pm


Assistant Faculty of Chemistry
Department of Chemistry
Louisiana State University
Talk Title: Can Natural Products Save Us From Obesity?


Title: Can natural products save us from obesity?
Fatima Rivas, PhD
Department of Chemistry
LSU, Baton Rouge, Louisiana

Adipocytes are highly specialized lipid storage cells that play a major role in energy homeostasis
in vertebrates. Adipose tissue dysfunction occurs with aging and has systemic effects, including
peripheral insulin resistance, ectopic lipid deposition, and inflammation. Dysfunctional adipose tissue
arises from high expression of metabolic enzymes, particularly 11β-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase type
1(11β-HSD1), which is responsible for activating the master transcription factor, the glucocorticoid
receptor (GR), a promoter of cellular remodeling during preadipocyte differentiation and inducer of
hypertrophy with impaired differentiation features. We have shown that selective inhibition of 11β-HSD1
with the natural product colletoic acid can directly regulate glucocorticoid (GC) action at the tissue level,
dialing down GC action without inducing cytotoxicity. Here, we highlight the importance of targeting the
GR signaling pathway selectively in adipose tissue and present our findings on the potential of natural
products as alternative therapeutic strategies