Effect of sex and genotype on cardiovascular biomarker response to fish oils: the FINGEN Study
Caslake, M. J., Miles, E. A., Kofler, B. M., Lietz, G., Curtis, P., Armah, C. K., Kimber, A. C., Grew, J. P., Farrell, L., Stannard, J., Napper, F. L., Sala-Vila, A., West, A. L., Mathers, J. C., Packard, C., Williams, C. M., Calder, P. C. and Minihane, A. M. (2008) Effect of sex and genotype on cardiovascular biomarker response to fish oils: the FINGEN Study. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 88 (3). pp. 618-629. ISSN 0002-9165
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Background: The lipid-modulatory effects of high intakes of the fish-oil fatty acids eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) are well established and likely to contribute to cardioprotective benefits. Objectives: We aimed to determine the effect of moderate EPA and DHA intakes (< 2 g EPA + DHA/d) on the plasma fatty acid profile, lipid and apolipoprotein concentrations, lipoprotein subclass distribution, and markers of oxidative status. We also aimed to examine the effect of age, sex, and apolipoprotein E (APOE) genotype on the observed responses. Design: Three hundred twelve adults aged 20-70 y, who were prospectively recruited according to age, sex, and APOE genotype, completed a double-blind placebo-controlled crossover study. Participants consumed control oil, 0.7 g EPA + DHA/d (0.7FO), and 1.8 g EPA + DHA/d (1.8FO) capsules in random order, each for an 8-wk intervention period, separated by 12-wk washout periods. Results: In the group as a whole, 8% and 11% lower plasma triacylglycerol concentrations were evident after 0.7FO and 1.8FO, respectively (P < 0.001): significant sex x treatment (P = 0.038) and sex x genotype x treatment (P = 0.032) interactions were observed, and the greatest triacylglycerol-lowering responses (reductions of 15% and 23% after 0.7FO and 1.8FO, respectively) were evident in APOE4 men. Furthermore, lower VLDL-cholesterol (P = 0.026) and higher LDL-cholesterol (P = 0.010), HDL-cholesterol (P < 0.001), and HDL2 (P < 0.001) concentrations were evident after fish-oil intervention. Conclusions: Supplements providing EPA + DHA at doses as low as 0.7 g/d have a significant effect on the plasma lipid profile. The results of the current trial, which used a prospective recruitment approach to examine the responses in population subgroups, are indicative of a greater triacylglycerol-lowering action of long-chain n-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids in males than in females.