Encyclopedia of Cancer

Living Edition
| Editors: Manfred Schwab

Linoleic Acid

  • Hiroki Kuniyasu
Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-642-27841-9_3371-2


Linoleic acid (LA) is an 18-carbon, polyunsaturated fatty acid (PUFA), which contains two cis double bonds. Because mammals cannot introduce a double bond at carbon atoms beyond C-9 in the fatty acid chain, linoleic acid (18:2 cis9, Δ12) and linolenic acid (18:3 cis9, Δ12, Δ15) are two essential fatty acids. LA possesses low melting temperature and provides fluidity to cell membranes. LA is mainly contained in plant oils, such as safflower oil and corn oil.


The effect of linoleic acid (LA) on health is still controversial. LA is one of the two essential fatty acids, which means dietary supplementation of LA is necessary for maintaining cell activity. Saturated fatty acids have been implicated in obesity, heart disease, diabetes, and cancer, while PUFAs generally have a positive effect on health; however, a high ω-6/ω-3 ratio, which is associated with today’s Western diets, promotes the pathogenesis of many diseases, including cardiovascular disease,...


Linoleic Acid Epidermal Growth Factor Receptor Ligand Retinoid Receptor Epigenetic Gene Silence Cell Embedding 
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See Also

  1. (2012) Cyclooxygenase-2. In: Schwab M (ed) Encyclopedia of Cancer, 3rd edn. Springer Berlin Heidelberg, p 1035. doi: 10.1007/978-3-642-16483-5_1435Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Molecular PathologyNara Medical University School of MedicineKashiharaJapan