, Volume 51, Issue 3, pp 279–289 | Cite as

Hypolipidemic Effects of Phospholipids (PL) Containing n-3 Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids (PUFA) Are Not Dependent on Esterification of n-3 PUFA to PL

  • Kenji Fukunaga
  • Ryota Hosomi
  • Midori Fukao
  • Kazumasa Miyauchi
  • Seiji Kanda
  • Toshimasa Nishiyama
  • Munehiro Yoshida
Original Article


Phospholipids (PL) containing n-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA) have beneficial effects of maintaining and promoting health compared with triacylglycerols (TAG) containing n-3 PUFA or general PL. This study evaluated the effects of dietary PL containing n-3 PUFA and elucidated the effects of the glycerophosphate structure and n-3 PUFA on fatty acid (FA) metabolism in rats. Rats were fed a basal diet containing soybean oil alone, TAG containing n-3 PUFA (1.8 %), soybean PL (2.7 %), PL containing n-3 PUFA (2.7 %), or TAG containing n-3 PUFA (1.8 %) + soybean PL (2.7 %). The present n-3 PUFA-supplemented diets had similar FA compositions, and the PL diets had similar PL compositions. TAG containing n-3 PUFA reduced serum TAG contents, but did not affect serum cholesterol contents compared with soybean oil alone. PL diets containing n-3 PUFA and the combination of TAG containing n-3 PUFA and soybean PL resulted in decreased serum and liver TAG contents compared with the diet containing soybean oil alone, reflecting enhanced liver FA β-oxidation. The results of this study show that TAG containing n-3 PUFA with added soybean PL affects serum and liver TAG and cholesterol contents to a similar degree as PL containing n-3 PUFA. TAG containing n-3 PUFA and soybean PL are widely used as functional food ingredients and pharmaceutical constituents and are inexpensive compared with PL containing n-3 PUFA. Therefore, the combination of TAG containing n-3 PUFA and soybean PL has potential as a useful and inexpensive component of functional foods.


n-3 Polyunsaturated fatty acids Phospholipid Fatty acid metabolism Rat 



Acetyl-CoA carboxylase


Acyl-CoA oxidase


American Institute of Nutrition


Alanine aminotransferase




Aspartate aminotransferase


Carnitine palmitoyl transferase


Docosahexaenoic acid (22:6n-3)


Eicosapentaenoic acid (20:5n-3)


Fatty acid(s)


Fatty acid synthase


Glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase


Glyceraldehyde 3-phosphate dehydrogenase


Gas chromatograph




Hepatic triglyceride lipase


Low-density lipoprotein


Liver X receptor


Malic enzyme


Monounsaturated fatty acid(s)




Peroxisome proliferator activated receptor


Polyunsaturated fatty acid(s)


Stearoyl-CoA desaturase


Standard error of the mean


Saturated fatty acid(s)


Sterol regulatory element binding protein




White adipose tissue



We would like to thank Hiroe Shimizu, Hiromitsu Imaike, and Ryosuke Inayoshi of Kansai University for their help with animal care and lipid analyses. We thank Enago ( for the English language review.

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that there are no conflicts of interest.


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Copyright information

© AOCS 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Kenji Fukunaga
    • 1
  • Ryota Hosomi
    • 1
  • Midori Fukao
    • 1
  • Kazumasa Miyauchi
    • 1
  • Seiji Kanda
    • 2
  • Toshimasa Nishiyama
    • 2
  • Munehiro Yoshida
    • 1
  1. 1.Laboratory of Food and Nutritional Sciences, Faculty of Chemistry, Materials, and BioengineeringKansai UniversitySuitaJapan
  2. 2.Department of Public HealthKansai Medical UniversityHirakataJapan

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