Send to

Choose Destination
Lipids. 2004 Oct;39(10):955-61.

Dietary fish oil dose- and time-response effects on cardiac phospholipid fatty acid composition.

Author information

Smart Foods Center, Department of Biomedical Science, University of Wollongong, Wollongong, NSW 2522, Australia.


Fish consumption is associated with reduced cardiovascular mortality, and elevated myocardial long-chain n-3 polyunsaturated FA (PUFA) content is implicated in this cardioprotection. This study examined the dose and time responses for incorporation of n-3 PUFA into cellular membranes in rats fed fish oil (FO)-containing diets. For the time course study, rats were fed a 10% FO diet for periods ranging from 0 to 42 d, after which myocardial and erythrocyte membrane fatty acid composition was determined. For the dose response study, rats (n = 3) were fed 0, 1.25, 2.5, 5, or 10% FO for 4 wk, with myocardial, erythrocyte, and skeletal muscle membrane FA determined. Myocardial DHA (22:6n-3) levels doubled in 2 d, stabilizing at levels approximately 200% higher than control after 28 d feeding with 10% FO. By comparison, DHA levels doubled after 4 wk of 1.25% FO feeding. In myocardium and skeletal muscle, EPA (20:5n-3) levels remained low, but in erythrocytes EPA levels reached 50% of DHA levels. The n-3 PUFA were incorporated at the expense of n-6 PUFA in myocardium and skeletal muscle, whereas erythrocytes maintained arachidonic acid levels, and total n-3 PUFA incorporation was lower. This study shows that low doses of FO produce marked changes in myocardial DHA levels; maximal incorporation takes up to 28 d to occur; and while erythrocytes are a good indicator of tissue n-3 incorporation in stable diets, they vary greatly in their time course and pattern of incorporation.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Springer
Loading ...
Support Center