An Emerging Role of Natriuretic Peptides: Igniting the Fat Furnace to Fuel and Warm the Heart

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Abstract

Natriuretic peptides are produced in the heart and have been well characterized for their actions in the cardiovascular system to promote diuresis and natriuresis, thereby contributing to maintenance of extracellular fluid volume and vascular tone. For this review, we scanned the literature using PubMed and MEDLINE using the following search terms: beiging, adipose tissue, natriuretic peptides, obesity, and metabolic syndrome. Articles were selected for inclusion if they represented primary data or review articles published from 1980 to 2015 from high-impact journals. With the advent of the newly approved class of drugs that inhibit the breakdown of natriuretic peptides, thereby increasing their circulation, we highlight additional functions for natriuretic peptides that have recently become appreciated, including their ability to drive lipolysis, facilitate beiging of adipose tissues, and promote lipid oxidation and mitochondrial respiration in skeletal muscle. We provide evidence for new roles for natriuretic peptides, emphasizing their ability to participate in body weight regulation and energy homeostasis and discuss how they may lead to novel strategies to treat obesity and the metabolic syndrome.

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