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Pharmacokinetics of omega-3-fatty acids during ingestion of fish oil preparations.

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Department of Nephrology, University of Cologne, Germany.


An in vivo comparison of three dosages (3 g, 6 g, 12 g) of two different fish oil preparations in terms of plasma concentrations of their major active components eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) was performed. The plasma accumulation was measured during 28 days of ingestion and an equally long wash out period. Data were scrutinized for bioavailability in order to distinguish between the efficiency of the two preparations. Rapid increases in EPA and DHA plasma concentrations can be demonstrated at all dosages during a 28-day ingestion period. EPA accumulated more during ingestion of high than of low dosages of fish oil. DHA revealed almost identical increases and peak values in plasma concentrations in all subgroups. The present data demonstrate dose dependent increases of EPA concentrations whereas DHA plasma concentrations are comparable in all dosages investigated. Measurable EPA and DHA plasma concentration levels are inappropriate means to explain clinical effectiveness. These results were found in both commercially available fish oil preparations. Direct comparison of both preparations revealed no differences in bioavailability.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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