Send to

Choose Destination
JPEN J Parenter Enteral Nutr. 2002 Nov-Dec;26(6):351-6.

Omega-3 fatty acid supplementation increases anti-inflammatory cytokines and attenuates systemic disease sequelae in experimental pancreatitis.

Author information

Department of Surgery, Benjamin Franklin Medical Center, Freie Universit├Ąt Berlin, Germany.



The cytokines involved in the systemic inflammatory response in acute pancreatitis (AP) comprise lipid mediators (eg, prostanoids, thromboxanes, leukotrienes) generated from arachidonic acid (AA) and eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA). The AA-derived mediators are generated from omega-6-fatty acid (FA) and have strong proinflammatory effects and the EPA-derived mediators generated from omega-3-fatty acid are less active or even exhibit anti-inflammatory effects. Basic parenteral nutrition delivers omega-6-FA and omega-3-FA at a ratio of approximately 7:1.


To investigate whether altering the FA composition by fish oil supplementation (omega-3-FA) affects cytokine production and the parameters reflecting systemic disease severity in experimental AP.


Severe AP was induced in 30 rats by standardized intraductal infusion of bile salt and IV cerulein. Six hours after AP induction, rats were randomized to TPN using commercial solutions with identical amounts of glucose, amino acids, and fat but different FA compositions: group 1 received a soybean-based fat solution without additional fish oil and group 2 was supplemented with 0.2 g/kg per day fish oil. TPN was continued for 2 days. Serum concentrations of IL-6 and IL-10 were measured before and after AP induction and at 24 and 48 hours after starting TPN. Routine cardiorespiratory and renal parameters were monitored to assess the systemic response at the organ level.


Animals treated with fish oil had significantly higher IL-10 values (at 24 hours, 63 +/- 7 versus 46 +/- 3 pg/mL), produced more urine (28 +/- 0.9 versus 21 +/- 1.6 mL), and had significantly fewer episodes of respiratory dysfunction (defined as a pO2 < 80 mm Hg or pCO2 > 50 mm Hg for >15 minutes; 29% versus 67%) during the observation period.


Altering eicosanoid mediator precursor availability by infusion of (omega-3 fatty acid increases anti-inflammatory cytokines in this model of AP. This together with improved renal and respiratory function suggests that the systemic response to pancreatic injury is attenuated.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Wiley
Loading ...
Support Center