High-Dose Omega-3 Fatty Acids in Cardiovascular Prevention: Finally Living Up to Their Potential?


Despite the widespread use of statins in the setting of high cardiovascular risk, many patients continue to experience clinical events. This highlights the need to identify additional therapeutic strategies for high-risk patients. Interest in the use of omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids to prevent cardiovascular disease has been high for several decades. Despite promising results from before the statin era, many clinical trials have produced disappointing findings regarding products containing conventional doses of omega-3 fatty acids. More recent clinical trials using high doses of omega-3 fatty acids in targeted populations have suggested potential benefit when targeting the risk driven by atherogenic dyslipidemia. We review the clinical implications of completed and ongoing trials.

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Corresponding author

Correspondence to Stephen J. Nicholls.

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No sources of funding were used to conduct this review or prepare this manuscript.

Conflict of interest

SJN has received research support from AstraZeneca, Amgen, Anthera, CSL Behring, Cerenis, Eli Lilly, Esperion, Resverlogix, Novartis, InfraReDx, and Sanofi-Regeneron and is a consultant for Amgen, Akcea, AstraZeneca, Boehringer Ingelheim, CSL Behring, Eli Lilly, Esperion, Kowa, Merck, Takeda, Pfizer, Sanofi-Regeneron, and Novo Nordisk. AJN and SM have no conflicts of interest that are directly relevant to the content of this article.

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Nelson, A.J., Mirzaee, S. & Nicholls, S.J. High-Dose Omega-3 Fatty Acids in Cardiovascular Prevention: Finally Living Up to Their Potential?. Am J Cardiovasc Drugs 20, 11–18 (2020). https://doi.org/10.1007/s40256-019-00363-3

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