Medical Definition of Fat cell

  • Medical Author:
    William C. Shiel Jr., MD, FACP, FACR

    Dr. Shiel received a Bachelor of Science degree with honors from the University of Notre Dame. There he was involved in research in radiation biology and received the Huisking Scholarship. After graduating from St. Louis University School of Medicine, he completed his Internal Medicine residency and Rheumatology fellowship at the University of California, Irvine. He is board-certified in Internal Medicine and Rheumatology.

Fat cell: A cell containing fat. Also called an adipocyte.

A fat cell, or adipocyte, is a connective tissue cell that has differentiated and become specialized in the synthesis (manufacture) and storage of fat.

The fat cell (adipocyte) is important to the body in maintaining proper energy balance, storing calories in the form of lipids, mobilizing energy sources in response to hormonal stimulation, and commanding changes by signal secretions.

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Reviewed on 12/11/2018

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