PLoS One 5:e13014 (2010)
Jie Qin1,2, Wei-Qiang Li1,2, Li Zhang3, Fei Chen1,2, Wen-Hua Liang4, Frank Fuxiang Mao3, Xiu-MingZhang1,2, Bruce T. Lahn1,2,3, Wei-Hua Yu1,2*, Andy Peng Xiang1,2,5*
Techniques for small molecule screening are widely used in biological mechanism study and drug discovery. Here, we reported a novel adipocyte differentiation assay for small molecule selection, based on human mesenchymal stem cells (hMSCs) transduced with fluorescence reporter gene driven by adipogenic specific promoter--adipocyte Protein 2 (aP2; also namely Fatty Acid Binding Protein 4, FABP4). During normal adipogenic induction as well as adipogenic inhibition by Ly294002, we confirmed that the intensity of green fluorescence protein corresponded well to the expression level of aP2 gene. Furthermore, this variation of green fluorescence protein intensity can be read simply through fluorescence spectrophotometer. By testing another two small molecules in adipogenesis--Troglitazone and CHIR99021, we proved that this is a simple and sensitive method, which could be applied in adipocyte biology, drug discovery and toxicological study in the future.