Send to:

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
J Nutr Biochem. 2012 Sep;23(9):1128-33. doi: 10.1016/j.jnutbio.2011.06.006. Epub 2011 Dec 1.

Acute supplementation with eicosapentaenoic acid reduces platelet microparticle activity in healthy subjects.

Author information

  • 1School of Biomedical Sciences & Pharmacy, University of Newcastle, Hunter Medical Research Institute, Callaghan, NSW 2308, Australia.



Dietary supplementation with omega-3 fatty acids has been associated with reduced incidence in thrombotic events. In addition, administration of n-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) has been shown to rectify elevated platelet microparticle (MP) number and procoagulant activity in post myocardial infarction patients. However, it is unknown whether supplementation can alter these parameters in healthy individuals and if such effects are immediate or require long-term supplementation. We have previously demonstrated a gender-specific effect of LCn-3PUFA supplementation on platelet aggregation in healthy human subjects. Here we extend these findings to include the acute effects of supplementation with EPA- or DHA-rich oils on circulating MP levels and activity in healthy subjects.


A placebo-controlled trial was conducted in healthy males and females (n=30). MP activity, MP levels and platelet aggregation were measured at 0 and 24 h postsupplementation with either a placebo or EPA- or DHA-rich oil.


Both EPA and DHA effectively reduced platelet aggregation at 24 h postsupplementation relative to placebo (-13.3%, P=.006 and -11.9%, P=.016, respectively), but only EPA reduced MP activity (-19.4%, P=.003). When grouped by gender, males showed a similar reduction in both platelet aggregation and MP activity (-20.5%, P=.008; -22%, P=.008) following EPA, while females showed significantly reduced platelet aggregation (-13.7%, P=.04) but not MP activity after DHA only.


EPA and DHA exert gender-dependent effects on platelet aggregation and platelet MP activity, but not on MP levels. With respect to thrombotic disease risk, males may benefit more from EPA supplementation.

Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for Elsevier Science
    Loading ...
    Write to the Help Desk