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Mol Cell Biochem. 2002 Mar;232(1-2):143-8.

Eicosapentaenoic acid and docosahexaenoic acid modulate MAP kinase enzyme activity in human T-cells.

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University of Burgundy, Department of Physiology, UPRES Lipids and Nutrition, Faculty of Life Sciences, Dijon, France.


In order to investigate the implication of docosahexacnoic acid (DHA) and eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) in T signalling, we assessed their effects on the activation of two mitogen activated protein (MAP) kinases, i.e. extracellularly-regulated kinases 1 and 2 (ERK1/ERK2) in Jurkat T-cells. The n-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) alone failed to induce MAP kinase (MAPK) enzyme activity. To elucidate whether DHA and EPA act via protein kinase C (PKC) dependent and independent pathways, we employed their respective activators, i.e. phorbol 12-myristate 13-acetate (PMA) and antiCD3 antibodies. We observed that U0126, an inhibitor of MAPK kinase-ERK kinase 1/2 (MEK1/2), abolished the actions of these two agents on MAPK activation, suggesting that they act upstream of MEK1/2. Further EPA and DHA diminished both the PMA- and antiCD3 antibodies-induced enzyme activity of ERK1/ERK2 in Jurkat T-cells. Interestingly, okadaic acid (OA), a phosphatase inhibitor seems to act downstream of MEK1/2 as U0126 failed to inhibit the OA-induced MAPK activation. It is noteworthy that EPA and DHA not only failed to curtail the OA-induced MAPK activity but also these n-3 PUFAs at 20 microM potentiated the action of OA. Therefore, EPA and DHA seem to modulate MAPK activation upstream and downstream of MEK1/2. On the hand, arachidonic acid, an n-6 PUFA potentiated the MAPK enzyme activity. In conclusion, our study shows that EPA and DHA may regulate T-cells functions by modulating MAPK enzyme activity.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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