Send to:

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 1993 Feb 1;90(3):1073-7.

Arachidonic acid status correlates with first year growth in preterm infants.

Author information

  • 1Department of Pediatrics, University of Tennessee, Memphis 38163.


Diets deficient in the omega-6 fatty acid linoleic acid reduce arachidonic acid (Ach) concentrations and retard growth of developing animals and humans. Nevertheless, plasma phosphatidylcholine Ach concentrations declined from 84 +/- 23 mg/liter at birth to a nadir of 38 +/- 11 mg/liter at 4 mo of age in preterm infants fed commercial formulas with linoleic acid, and weight normalized to that of term infants fell progressively beginning at 2 mo of age. The nadir of plasma phosphatidylcholine Ach (31 +/- 7 mg/liter) and growth were further reduced by formula containing marine oil compared with the commercial formulas. Ach status (defined as the mean plasma phosphatidylcholine Ach concentration at 2, 4, and 6.5 mo) correlated with one or more measures of normalized growth through 12 mo. Ach status and maternal height accounted for as much as 59% of the weight variance and 68% of the length variance in infants fed standard formulas. Better Ach status was not from higher energy intakes. A conditional Ach deficiency in preterm infants may contribute to growth over the first year of life. On the strength of the relationship between Ach status and growth, we hypothesize that dietary Ach could improve first year growth of preterm infants.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for HighWire Icon for PubMed Central
    Loading ...
    Write to the Help Desk