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Clin Nutr. 1999 Apr;18(2):93-101.

Effects of dietary polyunsaturated fatty acids and nucleotides on tissue fatty acid profiles of rats with carbon tetrachloride-induced liver damage.

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  • 1Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, School of Pharmacy, University of Granada, Granada, 18071, Spain.


The deficiency of polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA) that occurs in plasma of patients with liver cirrhosis has been assessed in rats with severe steatosis and mild liver necrosis induced by repeated administration of low doses of carbon tetrachloride (CCl(4)). The contribution of both dietary (n-3) long-chain PUFA and nucleotides to the recovery of the altered fatty acid profiles of tissue lipids of these rats has also been studied. Two groups of rats were used. The first was intraperitoneally injected 0.15 ml of a 10% (v/v) CCl(4)solution in paraffin per 100 g of body weight, three times a week for 9 weeks; the second received paraffin alone. After the treatment, six rats of each group were killed. Afterwards, the remaining controls were fed a semipurified diet (SPD) for 3 weeks, and the remaining rats in the CCl(4)group were divided into three new groups: the first was fed the SP diet; the second was fed the SP diet supplemented with 1% (n-3) polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA diet); and the third was fed the SP diet supplemented with 250 mg nucleotides per 100 g diet (NT diet). Fatty acids of plasma, erythrocyte membranes and liver microsomes were analyzed. Decreases in linoleic and arachidonic acids in both total plasma lipids and liver microsomal phospholipids were the main findings due to CCl(4)treatment. The rats that received CCl(4)and the PUFA diet showed the lowest levels of (n-6) PUFA and the highest levels of (n-3) PUFA in liver microsomal phospholipids, as well as a significant increase of (n-3) PUFAs in total plasma lipids. The animals that received the NT diet showed no signs of fatty infiltration and exhibited the highest levels of (n-6) PUFAs in liver microsomal phospholipids. These results show that CCl(4)affects fatty acid metabolism which is accordingly reflected in altered tissue fatty acid profiles, and that balanced diets containing PUFA and nucleotides are important for the recovery of the damaged liver in rats.

Copyright 1999 Harcourt Publishers Ltd.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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