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n-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids in phospholipid or triacylglycerol form attenuate nonalcoholic fatty liver disease via mediating cannabinoid receptor 1/adiponectin/ceramide pathway

journal contribution
posted on 2023-12-19, 04:36 authored by YF Chen, ZK Fan, X Gao, F Zhou, XF Guo, Andrew SinclairAndrew Sinclair, D Li
n-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA) have shown to exert beneficial effects in the treatment of nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD). Supplements of n-3 PUFA occur in either phospholipid or triacylglycerol form. The present study aimed to compare whether the different n-3 PUFA of marine-origin, namely krill oil, DHA/EPA-phospholipid (PL), and EPA/DHA-triacylglycerol (TAG) forms had differential abilities to ameliorate NAFLD. The NAFLD model was established in mice fed a high-fat and high-cholesterol diet (HFD). The mice showed evidence of weight gain, dyslipidemia, insulin resistance and hepatic steatosis after 9 weeks of HFD, while the three forms of the n-3 PUFA reduced hepatic TAG accumulation, fatty liver and improved insulin instance, and hepatic biomarkers after 9 weeks of intervention. Of these, krill oil intervention significantly reduced adipocyte hypertrophy and hepatic steatosis in comparison with DHA/EPA-PL and EPA/DHA-TAG groups. Importantly, only krill oil intervention significantly reduced serum alanine transaminase, aspartate transaminase concentrations and low-density lipoprotein-cholesterol, compared with the HFD group. Supplemental n-3 PUFA lowered circulating anandamide (AEA) and 2-arachidonoylglycerol (2-AG) concentrations, compared with the HFD group, which was associated with down-regulating CB1 and upregulating adiponectin expressions in adipose tissue. Besides, targeted lipidomic analyses indicated that the increased adiponectin levels were accompanied by reductions in hepatic ceramide levels. The reduced ceramide levels were associated with inhibiting lipid synthesis and increasing fatty acid β-oxidation, finally inhibiting TAG accumulation in the liver. Through mediating CB1/adiponectin/ceramide pathway, the present study suggested that administration of krill oil had superior health effects in the therapy of NAFLD in comparison with DHA/EPA-PL and EPA/DHA-TAG.



Journal of Nutritional Biochemistry



Article number





United States








Elsevier BV