Dietary fish oil. Influence on lesion regression in the porcine model of atherosclerosis.
We examined the influence of dietary fish oil on lesion regression in a porcine model of atherogenesis. Thirty-two female Yucatan miniature pigs were fed an atherogenic diet for 8 months. A no-regression group (n = 8) was killed to determine the extent of atherosclerosis at 8 months. Three regression groups were switched to normal minipig chow supplemented with either MaxEPA fish oil (FO group, n = 8), a control oil with the ratio of polyunsaturated to monounsaturated to saturated fatty acid matched to that of the fish oil (CO group, n = 8), or no oil supplement (NO group, n = 8) for a further 4 months. Plasma cholesterol levels reached between 15 and 20 mmol/L during the atherogenic phase and returned to normal (2 mmol/L) within 2 months of the beginning of the regression diet. Compared with the NO group, fish oil supplementation during the regression phase caused a decrease in VLDL and HDL cholesterol and an increase in LDL cholesterol. Similarly, the control oil also caused a decrease in VLDL cholesterol; however, in contrast to the FO group, HDL cholesterol increased and LDL cholesterol was unchanged. FO LDL, which had decreased levels of 20:4 (n-6 fatty acid) and increased levels of 18:3, 20:5, and 22:6 (n-3 fatty acids), was shown to be twice as susceptible to copper-mediated oxidation as CO LDL particles. Morphological examination of the major blood vessels revealed a significant reduction in lesion area in the ascending and thoracic aorta as well as the carotid artery after the regression diet; however, there was no significant difference between the fish oil and control oil groups in any of the vessels measured. Therefore, despite increased LDL, decreased HDL, and an increased susceptibility to in vitro oxidation of LDL, fish oil supplementation of a regression diet did not influence lesion regression.
Barbeau, ML; Klemp, KF; Guyton, JR; Rogers, KA
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