Journal of the American Oil Chemists Society

, Volume 41, Issue 10, pp 662–667

Fatty acid composition of oils from 21 species of marine fish, freshwater fish and shellfish


  • E. H. Gruger
    • Bureau of Commercial Fisheries Technological Laboratory
  • R. W. Nelson
    • Bureau of Commercial Fisheries Technological Laboratory
  • M. E. Stansby
    • Bureau of Commercial Fisheries Technological Laboratory

DOI: 10.1007/BF02661403

Cite this article as:
Gruger, E.H., Nelson, R.W. & Stansby, M.E. J Am Oil Chem Soc (1964) 41: 662. doi:10.1007/BF02661403


The fatty acid composition of body lipids was determined by GLC for 14 species of saltwater fish, three species of freshwater fish and four species of shellfish. In addition, liver lipids of two species and egg lipids of one species were analyzed for comparison with the fish body lipids. The various species ranged from lean to fatty and contained from 0.7~15.5% oil in the tissues. Certain major fatty acids were found to vary widely among the species, as follows: 1.6~8.0% myristic, 9.5~33.4% palmitic, 2.0~11.2% palmitoleic, 5.2~29.1% oleic, 0.7~10.5% eicosenoic, 5.0~21.5% eicosapentaenoic, 0.2~11.6% docosenoic and 5.9~26.2% docosahexaenoic acids. Analyses of two separate mullet-oil samples illustrated the wide differences that are possible for a single species caught during different seasons. Significant differences in the amt of particular fatty acids were found in comparing freshwater-fish analyses with analyses for marine fish. Oysters and scallops showed large amt of pentaenoic and hexaenoic acids in their oils.

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© The American Oil Chemists’ Society 1964