Omega-3s Benefit Inflammatory Immune Response

COLLEGE STATION, Texas--Long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids (LC-PUFAs) present in fish oil appear to beneficially modulate the immune response toward more passive and less inflammatory activity, according to research out of Texas A&M University. Researchers examined the effect of omega-3 PUFAs on T cell function in mice by feeding the animals a control diet (5 percent corn oil, providing omega-6 fatty acids) or a fish oil diet (4 percent corn oil with 1 percent fish oil providing omega-3s) for two weeks. Spleen CD4+T cells were cultured and analyzed for the impact of the dietary changes. Fish oil intake increased the percentage of Th2 polarized cells and suppressed Th1 cell proliferation, shifting the Th1/Th2 balance toward a more humoral immune response.

The study appeared in the July issue of the Journal of Nutrition (135:1745-51, 2005).

(Published: Journal of Nutrition (135:1745-51, 2005). )

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