Perspective and Directions for Future Development on the Effects of Fish Oil Constituents on Brain

  • Akhlaq A. Farooqui

Interest in n–3 and n–6 fatty acids and their beneficial and harmful effects on brain has increased immensely over the past 25 years. These fatty acids are required in large amounts for normal brain development and growth. Because humans do not have desaturase enzymes that facilitate the insertion of n–3 or n–6 double bonds, both families of fatty acids are obtained from the diet and are regarded as essential fatty acids. DHA status of the newborn and breastfed infant depends on the maternal intake of DHA and varies widely because infants obtain n–3 fatty acids (DHA) directly from mother’s milk and in adult life from dietary fish and fish oil or from its precursor α-linolenic acid (ALA) in liver. Mammalian liver also uses ALA to make another long-chain n–3 fatty acid called EPA, which while beneficial in many ways is not as essential to body functions as is DHA.


Lipid Mediator Fatty Acid Ratio Synaptic Plasma Membrane Neural Membrane Public Health Nutrition 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Molecular and Cellular BiochemistryThe Ohio State UniversityColumbusUSA

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