Human Subcutaneous Adipose Tissue Sampling using a Mini-liposuction Technique



MacGregor KA, Rodriguez-Sanchez N, Barwell ND, Gallagher IJ, Moran CN & Di Virgilio TG (2021) Human Subcutaneous Adipose Tissue Sampling using a Mini-liposuction Technique. Journal of Visualized Experiments, 175, Art. No.: e62635.

Studies on adipose tissue are useful in understanding metabolic and other conditions. Human subcutaneous adipose tissue is accessible. With appropriate training and strict adherence to aseptic technique, subcutaneous adipose samples can be safely and efficiently obtained in a non-clinical setting by researchers. Following the administration of local anesthetic lateral to the umbilicus, a 14 G needle attached to a 5 or 10 mL syringe is inserted through the skin into the subcutaneous tissue. Under suction, the syringe is moved in a reciprocating, slicing motion to isolate fragments of adipose tissue. Withdrawing the plunger is enough to ensure that adipose tissue fragments are aspirated through the needle into the syringe. A single biopsy can collect about 200 mg of tissue. This biopsy technique is very safe for both participants and research staff. Following the biopsy, participants can resume most everyday activities, although they should avoid swimming and overly strenuous activities for 48 h to avoid excessive bleeding. Participants can safely undergo 2 biopsies within a single day, meaning that the technique can be applied in before-after acute intervention studies.

Journal of Visualized Experiments: Volume 175

Publication date31/12/2021
Publication date online27/09/2021
Date accepted by journal30/08/2021

People (3)


Dr Thomas Di Virgilio
Dr Thomas Di Virgilio

Lecturer, Sport

Dr Colin Moran
Dr Colin Moran

Associate Professor, Sport

Dr Nidia Rodriguez-Sanchez
Dr Nidia Rodriguez-Sanchez

Lecturer in Physiology and Nutrition, Sport