AbstractThe present study examined the distribution of plasma phosphatidylcholine (PC) molecular species in rabbits fed a chow diet supplemented with fish oil (FO) in combination with either hydrogenated coconut oil or the n-6 fatty acid-rich evening primrose oil (EPO) for 4 weeks. Significant proportions of plasma PC molecular species contained long-chain n-3 fatty acids. Addition of EPO to the FO supplemented diet increased the incorporation of n-6 fatty acids into plasma PC molecules; it also raised the proportions of 16:0-18:2, n-6, 18:1-18:2, n-6, 18:2, n-6-18:2, n-6, and 16:0-20:4, n-6. The increase of n-6 fatty acid-containing PC was at the expense of n-3 fatty acid containing PC species. However, feeding n-6 fatty acids did not affect the distribution of PC molecular species based on total carbon chain length. The most interesting observation was that dietary suplementation with EPO, raised the ratio of 22:6, n-3-containing to 20:5, n-3-containing molecular species, suggesting an enhanced conversion of 20:5, n-3 to 22:6, n-3.
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