The main difference between unilocular and multilocular adipose tissue is that the cells of the unilocular adipose tissue contain one large central yellow fat droplet, whereas the cells of the multilocular adipose tissue contain numerous lipid droplets and abundant brown mitochondria.
Unilocular and multilocular adipose tissue are two types of adipose tissue. Generally, adipose tissue is a type of connective tissue that predominantly contains adipose cells.
Key Areas Covered
1. What is Unilocular Adipose Tissue
– Definition, Structure, Function
2. What is Multilocular Adipose Tissue
– Definition, Structure, Function
3. Similarities – Unilocular and Multilocular Adipose Tissue
– Outline of Common Features
4. Difference Between Unilocular and Multilocular Adipose Tissue
– Comparison of Key Differences
Multilocular Adipose Tissue, Unilocular Adipose Tissue
What is Unilocular Adipose Tissue
Unilocular adipose tissue or white adipose tissue is the major type of adipose tissue scattered throughout the connective tissue. Here, the white or the yellow color comes due to the presence of fresh, white fat. The main function of unilocular adipose tissue is to store energy. The energy is stored in the form of neutral fatty acids. Apart from that, the main feature of the unilocular adipose tissue is the presence of a large, single lipid droplet in the cytoplasm. Generally, the unilocular adipocyte is round in shape. In addition, the size of these adipocytes is 100-150 µm.
Furthermore, in unilocular adipose tissue, adipocytes occur in irregular hexagonal groups. Cells in the adipose tissue are connected to each other by gap junctions. Generally, the extracellular matrix that occurs between the adipocytes is the external lamina. Normally, it has properties similar to the basal lamina of epithelia. It also serves as a selective barrier as well as a mechanical scaffold.
What is Multilocular Adipose Tissue
Multilocular adipose tissue is a type of lipid storage cells that have a crucial role in non-shivering thermogenesis. The color of the adipocytes is brown. Multilocular adipose tissue is less common. However, it is common in small mammals and the new borne of large mammals. Moreover, multilocular adipose tissue is abundant in mitochondria. These mitochondria are packed with cristae. In general, the cells in the multilocular adipose tissue connect to the sympathetic nervous system (SNS).
Furthermore, the sympathetic nervous system secretes noradrenaline at the brown adipose tissue in order to activate G-protein-coupled beta-adrenergic receptors (AR), initiating cascades of metabolic events.
Similarities Between Unilocular and Multilocular Adipose Tissue
- Unilocular and multilocular adipose tissue are the two types of adipose tissue.
- Both tissues contain adipocytes, being isolated within the connective tissue. In fact, most adipocytes occur in aggregates.
- Adipose tissue is spread throughout the body and is one of the largest organs in the body. Additionally, adipose tissue makes up around 20% of the body weight.
- Adipose tissue is the largest repository of energy in the body.
- Moreover, adipose tissue contains fat that is a poor heat conductor and serves as a thermal insulation of the body.
- Adipose tissue fills the spaces of the body.
- In addition, adipose tissue secretes various types of molecules into the blood. Both types of adipose tissue also have a rich blood supply.
Difference Between Unilocular and Multilocular Adipose Tissue
Unilocular adipose tissue refers to the adipose tissue with a majority of the cell cytoplasm occupied by a very large lipid droplet, while multilocular adipose tissue refers to the adipose tissue composed of cells that contain numerous lipid droplets and abundant brown mitochondria.
Unilocular adipose tissue is the common type of adipose tissue while multilocular adipose tissue is less common.
Moreover, unilocular adipose tissue is yellow adipose tissue while multilocular adipose tissue is brown adipose tissue.
Unilocular adipose tissue cells contain one large central droplet of yellow fat in the cytoplasm while multilocular adipose tissue cells contain numerous lipid droplets and abundant mitochondria in the cytoplasm.
Unilocular adipose tissue store energy and release hormones and proteins while multilocular adipose tissue produces heat by non-shivering thermogenesis.
In brief, unilocular and multilocular adipose tissue are two types of adipose tissue that occur in the body. Generally, unilocular adipose tissue is the common type of adipose tissue that appears yellow. This type of adipose tissue contains one large central droplet of yellow fat in the cytoplasm. In addition, the main function of unilocular adipose tissue is to store energy while releasing hormones and proteins. In comparison, multilocular adipose tissue is less abundant and it appears in brown color. However, it contains numerous lipid droplets as well as abundant mitochondria. The main function of multilocular adipose tissue is to produce heat by non-shivering thermogenesis. Therefore, the main difference between unilocular and multilocular adipose tissue is the distribution of fat.
- ADIPOSE TISSUE: INTRODUCTION. Basic Histology – Text and Atlas 11th ed.
- “409 Adipose Tissue-es” By OpenStax College – Own work (CC BY-SA 4.0) via Commons Wikimedia
- “Histopathology of lipoma” By Hyeree Kim, Sang Hyun Cho, Jeong Deuk Lee, Hei Sung Kim – Own Work (CC BY 4.0) via Commons Wikimedia
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