Omega-3 fatty acids and neuropsychiatric disorders.

Human Biology and Nutritional Sciences, University of Guelph, Guelph, Ontario, Canada.
Reproduction Nutrition Development (Impact Factor: 2.17). 45(1):1-28.
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Epidemiological evidence suggests that dietary consumption of the long chain omega-3 fatty acids eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), commonly found in fish or fish oil, may modify the risk for certain neuropsychiatric disorders. As evidence, decreased blood levels of omega-3 fatty acids have been associated with several neuropsychiatric conditions, including Attention Deficit (Hyperactivity) Disorder, Alzheimer's Disease, Schizophrenia and Depression. Supplementation studies, using individual or combination omega-3 fatty acids, suggest the possibility for decreased symptoms associated with some of these conditions. Thus far, however, the benefits of supplementation, in terms of decreasing disease risk and/or aiding in symptom management, are not clear and more research is needed. The reasons for blood fatty acid alterations in these disorders are not known, nor are the potential mechanisms by which omega-3 fatty acids may function in normal neuronal activity and neuropsychiatric disease prevention and/or treatment. It is clear, however, that DHA is the predominant n-3 fatty acid found in the brain and that EPA plays an important role as an anti-inflammatory precursor. Both DHA and EPA can be linked with many aspects of neural function, including neurotransmission, membrane fluidity, ion channel and enzyme regulation and gene expression. This review summarizes the knowledge in terms of dietary omega-3 fatty acid intake and metabolism, as well as evidence pointing to potential mechanisms of omega-3 fatty acids in normal brain functioning, development of neuropsychiatric disorders and efficacy of omega-3 fatty acid supplementation in terms of symptom management.

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    ABSTRACT: Studies have consistently reported the participation of oxidative stress in bipolar disorder (BD). Evidences indicate that omega-3 (ω3) fatty acids play several important roles in brain development and functioning. Moreover, preclinical and clinical evidence suggests roles for ω3 fatty acids in BD. Considering these evidences, the present study aimed to investigate the effects of ω3 fatty acids on locomotor behavior and oxidative stress parameters (TBARS and protein carbonyl content) in brain of rats subjected to an animal model of mania induced by fenproporex. The fenproporex treatment increased locomotor behavior in saline-treated rats under reversion and prevention model, and ω3 fatty acids prevented fenproporex-related hyperactivity. Moreover, fenproporex increased protein carbonyls in the prefrontal cortex and cerebral cortex, and the administration of ω3 fatty acids reversed this effect. Lipid peroxidation products also are increased in prefrontal cortex, striatum, hippocampus and cerebral after fenproporex administration, but ω3 fatty acids reversed this damage only in the hippocampus. On the other hand, in the prevention model, fenproporex increased carbonyl content only in the cerebral cortex, and administration of ω3 fatty acids prevented this damage. Additionally, the administration of fenproporex resulted in a marked increased of TBARS in the prefrontal cortex, hippocampus, striatum and cerebral cortex, and prevent this damage in the prefrontal cortex, hippocampus and striatum. In conclusion, we are able to demonstrate that fenproporex-induced hyperlocomotion and damage through oxidative stress were prevented by ω3 fatty acids. Thus, the ω3 fatty acids may be important adjuvant therapy of bipolar disorder.
    Metabolic Brain Disease 01/2014; 29(1). DOI:10.1007/s11011-013-9473-4 · 2.40 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The presence of lipid alterations in lipid rafts from the frontal cortex in late stages of Alzheimer's disease (AD) has been recently demonstrated. Here, we have isolated and analyzed the lipid composition of lipid rafts from different brain areas from control and AD subjects at initial neuropathologic stages. We have observed that frontal cortex lipid rafts are profoundly altered in AD brains from the earliest stages of AD, namely AD I/II. These changes in the lipid matrix of lipid rafts affected both lipid classes and fatty acids and were also detected in the entorhinal cortex, but not in the cerebellum from the same subjects. Paralleling these changes, lipid rafts from AD frontal and entorhinal cortices displayed higher anisotropy for environment-sensitive probes, indicating that lipid changes in AD lipid rafts increased membrane order and viscosity in these domains. The pathophysiological consequences of these alterations in the development and progression of AD were strengthened by the significant, and specific, accumulation of β-secretase within the lipid rafts of AD subjects even at the earliest stages. Our results provide a mechanistic connection between lipid alterations in these microdomains and amyloidogenic processing of amyloid precursor protein.
    Neurobiology of aging 02/2014; 35(8). DOI:10.1016/j.neurobiolaging.2014.02.005 · 4.85 Impact Factor
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    Eicosapentaenoic acid: sources, health effects, and role in disease prevention, Edited by Theodore G. Bradley, Francisco P. Vargas, 01/2012: chapter Eicosapentaenoic acid and bone metabolism: pages 47-74; Nova Science Publishers.

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May 22, 2014