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Prostaglandins Leukot Essent Fatty Acids. 2013 Jul;89(1):39-45. doi: 10.1016/j.plefa.2013.04.003. Epub 2013 May 7.

Stearidonic and γ-linolenic acids in echium oil improves glucose disposal in insulin resistant monkeys.

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Wake Forest School of Medicine, Department of Pathology, Winston-Salem, NC 27127, USA.


Echium oil (EO) contains stearidonic acid (18:4), a n-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs), and gamma-linolenic acids (18:3), a n-6 PUFA that can be converted to long chain (LC)-PUFAs. We aimed to compare a safflower oil (SO)-enriched diet to EO- and fish oil (FO)-enriched diets on circulating and tissue PUFAs levels and glycemic, inflammatory, and cardiovascular health biomarkers in insulin resistant African green monkeys. In a Latin-square cross-over study, eight monkeys consumed matched diets for 6 weeks with 3-week washout periods. Monkeys consuming FO had significantly higher levels of n-3 LC-PUFAs and EO supplementation resulted in higher levels of circulating n-3 LC-PUFAs and a significant increase in dihomo-gamma linolenic acid (DGLA) in red blood cells and muscle. Glucose disposal was improved after EO consumption. These data suggest that PUFAs in EO supplementation have the capacity to alter circulating, RBC and muscle LC-PUFA levels and improve glucose tolerance in insulin-resistant monkeys.

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