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Atherosclerosis. 2015 Jun;240(2):431-6. doi: 10.1016/j.atherosclerosis.2015.03.043. Epub 2015 Apr 3.

Red blood cell fatty acids and biomarkers of inflammation: a cross-sectional study in a community-based cohort.

Author information

1
National Heart Lung and Blood Institute's and Boston University's Framingham Heart Study, Framingham, MA, USA; Department of Cardiology and Preventive Medicine, Boston University School of Medicine, Boston, MA, USA; Department of Medicine, Boston University School of Medicine, Boston, MA, USA.
2
Boston University Medical Center, Boston, MA 02118, USA.
3
National Heart Lung and Blood Institute's and Boston University's Framingham Heart Study, Framingham, MA, USA.
4
National Heart Lung and Blood Institute's and Boston University's Framingham Heart Study, Framingham, MA, USA; Department of Mathematics and Statistics, Boston University, Boston, MA, USA; Department of Biostatistics, Boston University School of Public Health, Boston, MA, USA.
5
National Heart Lung and Blood Institute's and Boston University's Framingham Heart Study, Framingham, MA, USA; Department of Cardiology and Preventive Medicine, Boston University School of Medicine, Boston, MA, USA; Department of Medicine, Boston University School of Medicine, Boston, MA, USA; Epidemiology Department, Boston University School of Public Health, Boston, MA, USA.
6
Department of Medicine, Sanford School of Medicine, University of South Dakota, and OmegaQuant Analytics, LLC, 5009 W. 12th St, Ste 8, Sioux Falls, SD 57106, USA. Electronic address: bill@omegaquant.com.

Abstract

INTRODUCTION:

Inflammation and inflammatory biomarkers have emerged as integral components and predictors of incident cardiovascular (CV) disease. Omega-3 fatty acids, particularly eicosapentaenoic and docosahexaenoic acids (EPA and DHA) have anti-inflammatory properties, and have been variably associated with lower blood pressure, favorable blood lipid changes, and reduced CV events.

METHODS AND RESULTS:

We examined the cross-sectional association of red blood cell (RBC) fatty acids, representative of body membrane fatty acid composition, with 10 biomarkers active in multiple inflammatory pathways in 2724 participants (mean age 66 ± 9 years, 54% women, 8% minorities) from the Framingham Offspring and minority Omni Cohorts. After multivariable adjustment, the RBC EPA and DHA content was inversely correlated (all P ≤ 0.001) with 8 biomarkers: urinary isoprostanes (r = -0.16); and soluble interleukin-6 (r = -0.10); C-reactive protein (r = -0.08); tumor necrosis factor receptor 2 (r = -0.08); intercellular adhesion molecule-1 (r = -0.08); P-selectin (r = -0.06); lipoprotein-associated phospholipase-A2 mass (r = -0.11) and activity (r = -0.08). The correlations for monocyte chemoattractant protein-1 was -0.05, P = 0.006 and osteoprotegerin (r = -0.06, P = 0.002) were only nominally significant.

CONCLUSION:

In our large community-based study, we observed modest inverse associations between several types of inflammatory biomarkers with RBC omega-3 fatty acid levels. Our findings are consistent with the hypothesis that omega-3 fatty acids have anti-inflammatory properties.

KEYWORDS:

Biomarkers; Cross-sectional study; Inflammation; Omega-3 fatty acids

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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