Exogenous long-chain n-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (LC-FA) are mainly incorporated into phospholipids in membranes and to some extent into cholesteryl esters. Limited data have been reported on the relative distribution of n-3 FA in lipoproteins. In the present study, fingertip blood and plasma levels of n-3 fatty acids, both at steady state or after a large intake (12 g of LC-FA as ethyl esters) were correlated to the levels of the major lipoproteins. At steady state there were weak, mainly non-significant correlations between n-3 levels and lipoproteins. However, the correlations became significantly negative between HDL-C levels and peak levels of n-3 or area under the curve after a single large intake of n-3 ethyl esters. These findings may shed light on recent observations indicating that exposure to n-3 can significantly decrease apoA-I, ABCA1, lecithin cholesterol acyltransferase and phospholipid transfer protein mRNA levels and antagonise A-I promoter activity.
n-3lipids lipoproteins HDL finger prick
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