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Lipids. 2012 Feb;47(2):151-60. doi: 10.1007/s11745-011-3637-y. Epub 2011 Dec 4.

Daily intake of cod or salmon for 2 weeks decreases the 18:1n-9/18:0 ratio and serum triacylglycerols in healthy subjects.

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Department of Health, Nutrition and Management, Faculty of Health Sciences, Oslo and Akershus University College of Applied Sciences, Postbox 4, St. Olavsplass, 0130, Oslo, Norway.

Erratum in

  • Lipids. 2012 Jul;47(7):755-6.


Intake of fish and omega-3 (n-3) fatty acids is associated with a reduced concentration of plasma triacylglycerols (TAG) but the mechanisms are not fully clarified. Stearoyl-CoA desaturase-1 (SCD1) activity, governing TAG synthesis, is affected by n-3 fatty acids. Peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC) display expression of genes involved in lipid metabolism. The aim of the present study was to estimate whether intake of lean and fatty fish would influence n-3 fatty acids composition in plasma phospholipids (PL), serum TAG, 18:1n-9/18:0 ratio in plasma PL, as well as PBMC gene expression of SCD1 and fatty acid synthase (FAS). Healthy males and females (n = 30), aged 20-40, consumed either 150 g of cod, salmon, or potato (control) daily for 15 days. During intervention docosahexaenoic acid (DHA, 22:6n-3) increased in the cod group (P < 0.05), while TAG concentration decreased (P < 0.05). In the salmon group both eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA, 20:5n-3) and DHA increased (P < 0.05) whereas TAG concentration and the 18:1n-9/18:0 ratio decreased (P < 0.05). Reduction of the 18:1n-9/18:0 ratio was associated with a corresponding lowering of TAG (P < 0.05) and an increase in EPA and DHA (P < 0.05). The mRNA levels of SCD1 and FAS in PBMC were not significantly altered after intake of cod or salmon when compared with the control group. In conclusion, both lean and fatty fish may lower TAG, possibly by reducing the 18:1n-9/18:0 ratio related to allosteric inhibition of SCD1 activity, rather than by influencing the synthesis of enzyme protein.

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