The regulation of the expression of adipose-related genes, i.e., aP2, adipsin, and glycerophosphate dehydrogenase (GPDH) by growth hormone (GH) and polyamines, as well as the role of fatty acids, have been investigated in polyamine-dependent Ob1754 cells and Ob1771 preadipose cells. Growth hormone acts as an obligatory hormone for adipsin and GPDH gene expression but its presence is not required for the expression of the aP2 gene. In fully differentiated Ob1771 cells, impairment of fatty acid synthesis by glucose deprivation leads to an inhibition of the aP2 gene expression, whereas the expression of adipsin and GPDH genes remains unaffected. Supplementation of the culture medium with fatty acids prevents the decrease of aP2 gene expression, and this effect appears primarily due to an increase in the transcriptional level of aP2 gene. The induction of aP2 gene has been examined in early committed, lipid-free Ob1771 cells in which fatty acid synthesis is very low despite glucose supplementation. Long-chain fatty acids (≥ C12) are able to activate the aP2 gene. It is concluded that fatty acids or fatty acid metabolites activate the aP2 gene and subsequently modulate its expression.