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1.  Changes in Brown Adipose Tissue in Boys and Girls during Childhood and Puberty 
The Journal of Pediatrics  2011;160(4):604-609.e1.
To characterize the changes in brown adipose tissue (BAT) during puberty in boys and girls.
Study design
We examined the prevalence and the volume of BAT at different stages of sexual development in pediatric patients who underwent positron emission tomography/computer tomography (PET/CT) studies.
Of the 73 patients, 43 (59%) had BAT depicted on PET/CT. Visualized BAT was significantly less prevalent in PET/CT studies of pre-pubertal (Tanner stage 1) children than pubertal (Tanner stages 2-5) subjects (15% vs. 75%). Values for the volume of BAT also increased during puberty, but the magnitude of the increase was substantially greater during the final two stages of puberty (Tanner stage 4 or 5) than in earlier stages of sexual development (Tanner stages 1, 2, and 3) (Boys: 499±246 vs. 50±36, p <0.0001, Girls: 286±139 vs. 36±29, p = 0.024). Changes in BAT volume were also significantly greater in boys than in girls (p = 0.004) and were closely related to muscle volume (r’s = 0.52, 0.64 and both p’s<0.01, for boys and girls, respectively).
The depiction and the volume of brown fat increase during puberty. Metabolic and hormonal events related to the achievement of sexual maturity are likely responsible for the rapid increase in brown fat that occurs during puberty.
PMCID: PMC3307823  PMID: 22048045
Brown adipose tissue; puberty; muscle; PET/CT
2.  Unequivocal Identification of Brown Adipose Tissue in a Human Infant 
We report the unique depiction of brown adipose tissue (BAT) by MRI and computed tomography (CT) in a human three month-old infant. Based on cellular differences between BAT and more lipid-rich white adipose tissue (WAT), chemical-shift MRI and CT were both capable of generating distinct signal contrasts between the two tissues and against surrounding anatomy, utilizing fat-signal fraction metrics in the former and X-ray attenuation values in the latter. While numerous BAT imaging experiments have been performed previously in rodents, the identification of BAT in humans has only recently been described with fusion positron emission and computed tomography in adults. The imaging of BAT in children has not been widely reported and furthermore, MRI of human BAT in general has not been demonstrated. In the present work, large bilateral supraclavicular BAT depots were clearly visualized with MRI and CT. Tissue identity was subsequently confirmed by histology. BAT has important implications in regulating energy metabolism and non-shivering thermogenesis and has the potential to combat the onset of weight gain and the development of obesity. Current findings suggest that BAT is present in significant amounts in children and that MRI and CT can differentiate BAT from WAT based on intrinsic tissue properties.
PMCID: PMC3310283  PMID: 22180228
brown adipose tissue; white adipose tissue; histology; human; fat-signal fraction; X-ray attenuation

Results 1-2 (2)