The role of omega-3 fatty acids in mood disorders

Stahl, L. A., Begg, D. P., Weisinger, R. S. and Sinclair, Andrew 2008, The role of omega-3 fatty acids in mood disorders, Current opinion in investigational drugs, vol. 9, no. 1, pp. 57-64.

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Title The role of omega-3 fatty acids in mood disorders
Author(s) Stahl, L. A.
Begg, D. P.
Weisinger, R. S.
Sinclair, Andrew
Journal name Current opinion in investigational drugs
Volume number 9
Issue number 1
Start page 57
End page 64
Total pages 8
Publisher Current Drugs
Place of publication London, England
Publication date 2008-01-07
ISSN 1472-4472
2040-3429
Summary Research has established that docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), a long-chain omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acid (PUFA), plays a fundamental role in brain structure and function. Epidemiological and cross-sectional studies have also identified a role for long-chain omega-3 PUFA, which includes DHA, eicosapentaenoic acid, and docosapentaenoic acid, in the etiology of depression. In the past ten years, there have been 12 intervention studies conducted using various preparations of longchain omega-3 PUFA in unipolar and bipolar depression. The majority of these studies administered long-chain omega-3 PUFA as an adjunct therapy. The studies have been conducted over 4 to 16 weeks of intervention and have often included small cohorts. In four out of the seven studies conducted in depressed individuals and in two out of the five studies in bipolar patients, individuals have reported a positive outcome following supplementation with ethyl-eicosapentaenoic acid or fish oil containing long-chain omega-3 PUFA. In the three trials that researched the influence of DHA-rich preparations, no significant effects were reported. The mechanisms that have been invoked to account for the benefits of long-chain omega-3 PUFA in depression include reductions in prostaglandins derived from arachidonic acid, which lead to decreased brain-derived neurotrophic factor levels and/or alterations in blood flow to the brain.
Language eng
Field of Research 110104 Medical Biochemistry: Lipids
Socio Economic Objective 970111 Expanding Knowledge in the Medical and Health Sciences
HERDC Research category C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
HERDC collection year 2008
Copyright notice ©2008, BioMed Central
Persistent URL http://hdl.handle.net/10536/DRO/DU:30017659

Document type: Journal Article
Collection: School of Exercise and Nutrition Sciences
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