, Volume 17, Issue 1, pp 27-34

Interrelationship between dietarytrans fatty acids and the 6- and 9-desaturases in the rat

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Studies are reported on the effects of dietarytrans fatty acids on the 6- and 9-acyl desaturase activities in the liver microsomes of rats fed essential fatty acid (EFA)-deficient and non-FFA-deficient diets. In experiment I, weanling male rats were fed a semisynthetic diet with either 10% safflower oil (SAF) or 10% hydrogenated coconut oil (HCO). At the age of one year, half of the dietary fat was replaced by a supplement containing elaidate, linolelaidate andcis,trans-trans,cis-18∶2 (TRANS) for 12 weeks. In experiment II, male rats which were kept from weaning on a 10% SAF diet for one year received one of the following fat supplements for a 12-week period: 10% HCO, 9% HCO+1% TRANS, or 5% HCO+5% TRANS. Feeding TRANS depressed the 6-desaturase activity in the liver microsomes, especially in the EFA-deficient rats (HCO+TRANS group of experiment I). Unlike the 6-deaturase activity, the 9-desaturase activity was not inhibited by the dietarytrans fatty acids and was significantly stimulated in the non-EFA-deficient rats (SAF+TRANS group of experiment I and HCO+TRANS groups of experiment II). This was evidenced by incubation reactions and by comparisons of fatty acid consumptions and microsomal fatty acid levels, showing extra biosynthesis of 16∶1 and 18∶1 when TRANS was fed. The biosynthesis of essential (n−6) fatty acids was depressed by the TRANS supplement in EFA-deficient as well as in non-EFA-deficient animals.