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JPEN J Parenter Enteral Nutr. 1992 Jul-Aug;16(4):353-8.

Adaptation to a fish oil diet before inducing sepsis in rats prevents fatty infiltration of the liver.

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  • 1Department of Surgery, Jefferson Medical College, Thomas Jefferson University, Philadelphia, PA 19107.


Hypertriglyceridemia and fatty liver are common lipid abnormalities associated with Gram-negative sepsis. Fish oils have been shown to have beneficial effects in reducing plasma triglycerides (TG). This study was designed to investigate whether fish oils would prevent the elevation of plasma TG and the accumulation of liver lipids during sepsis. One group of rats was fed a 10% menhaden oil diet and the other group was fed a 10% corn oil diet for 14 days. On the 14th day, sepsis was induced by injecting the rats with 8 x 10(7) live Escherichia coli colonies/100 g of body weight and the rats were fasted for 22 hours. The liver composition of total lipids and TG in the septic rats prefed the fish oil was lower than in the septic rats prefed the corn oil. In the rats adapted to the corn oil diet, lipids accumulated in the livers of the septic rats in comparison with the control rats. Hepatocytes isolated from the septic rats adapted to the corn oil diet showed an increased esterification of [1-14C]palmitate into TG and phospholipids than hepatocytes from the control rats. Feeding the fish oil diet instead of the corn oil diet before inducing sepsis reduced TG, cholesterol, and phospholipid synthesis by 58%, 79%, and 71%, respectively. The rise in TG synthesis in the septic rats prefed the corn oil diet was associated with an 89% increase in the activity of phosphatidate phosphohydrolase. There was no significant difference in the activities of glycerol-3-phosphate acyltransferase and phosphatidate phosphohydrolase between control and septic rats.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

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