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Influence of sources of dietary oils on the life span of stroke-prone spontaneously hypertensive rats


In recent studies, the life span of stroke-prone spontaneously hypertensive (SHRSP) rats was altered by a variety of dietary fats. It was relatively shorter in rats fed canola oil as the sole source of fat. The present study was performed to find out whether the fatty acid profile and the high content of sulfur compounds in canola oil could modulate the life span of SHRSP rats. SHRSP rats (47 d old, n=23/group) were matched by body weight and systolic blood pressure and fed semipurified diets containing 10% canola oil, high-palmitic canola oil, low-sulfur canola oil, soybean oil, high-oleic safflower oil, a fat blend that mimicked the fatty acid composition of canola oil, or a fat blend high in saturated fatty acids. A 1% sodium chloride solution was used as drinking water to induce hypertension. After consuming the diets for 37 d, five rats from each dietary group were killed for collection of blood and tissue samples for biochemical analysis. The 18 remaining animals from each group were used for determining their life span. The mean survival time of SHRSP rats fed canola oil (87.4±4.0 d) was not significantly different (P>0.05) from those fed low-sulfur canola oil (89.7±8.5 d), suggesting that content of sulfur in canola oil has no effect on the life span of SHRSP rats. The SHRSP rats fed the noncanola oil-based diets lived longer (mean survival time difference was 6–13 d, P<0.05) than those fed canola and low-sulfur canola oils. No marked differences in the survival times were observed among the noncanola oil-based groups. The fatty acid composition of the dietary oils and of red blood cells and liver of SHRSP rats killed after 37 d of treatment showed no relationship with the survival times. These results suggest that the fatty acid profile of vegetable oils plays no important role on the life span of SHRSP rat. However, phytosterols in the dietary oils and in liver and brain were inversely correlated with the mean survival times, indicating that the differential effects of vegetable oils might be ascribed, at least partly, to their different phytosterol contents.

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flame atomic absorption spectroscopy


atomic emission spectroscopy


blood urea nitrogen


canola oil


rat chow


coconut oil


flaxseed oil


high density lipoprotein


high-oleic safflower oil


high-palmitic canola oil


a fat blend high in saturated fat


long-chain (C20+C22) polyunsaturated fatty acids


low-sulfur canola oil


a fat blend which mimicked the fatty acid composition of canola oil


monounsaturated fatty acids


palm oil


polyunsaturated fatty acids


red blood cells


soybean oil


systolic blood pressure


pooled standard deviation


saturated fatty acids


stroke-prone spontaneously hypertensive rats


thiobarbituric acid-reacting substances


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Correspondence to W. M. N. Ratnayake.

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Ratnayake, W.M.N., Plouffe, L., Hollywood, R. et al. Influence of sources of dietary oils on the life span of stroke-prone spontaneously hypertensive rats. Lipids 35, 409–420 (2000).

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  • Saturated Fatty Acid
  • Phytosterol
  • Campesterol
  • Life Span Study
  • Phytosterol Content