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Lipids. 1999 Oct;34(10):1057-63.

Effects of gamma-linolenic acid and docosahexaenoic acid in formulae on brain fatty acid composition in artificially reared rats.

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  • 1Department of Health Studies and Gerontology, University of Waterloo, Ontario, Canada. grward@healthy.uwaterloo.ca

Abstract

This study evaluated the effects of dietary supplementation with gamma-linolenic acid (GLA, 18:3n-6) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA, 22:6n-3) on the fatty acid composition of the neonatal brain in gastrostomized rat pups reared artificially from days 5-18. These pups were fed rat milk substitutes containing fats that provided 10% linoleic acid and 1% alpha-linolenic acid (% fatty acids) and, using a 2x3 factorial design, one of two levels of DHA (0.5 and 2.5%), and one of three levels of GLA (0.5, 1.0, and 3.0%). A seventh artificially reared group served as a reference group and was fed 0.5% DHA and 0.5% arachidonic acid (AA, 20:4n-6); these levels are within the range of those found in rat milk. The eighth group, the suckled control group, was reared by nursing dams fed a standard American Institute of Nutrition 93M chow. The fatty acid composition of the phosphatidylethanolamine, phosphatidylcholine, and phosphatidylserine/phosphatidylinositol membrane fractions of the forebrain on day 18 reflected the dietary composition in that high levels of dietary DHA resulted in increases in DHA but decreases in 22:4n-6 and 22:5n-6 in brain. High levels of GLA increased 22:4n-6 but, in contrast to previous findings with high levels of AA, did not decrease levels of DHA. These results suggest that dietary GLA, during development, differs from high dietary levels of AA in that it does not lead to reductions in brain DHA.

PMID:
10580333
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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