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Stearidonic acid as a ‘pro-eicosapentaenoic acid’

Harris, William S.

doi: 10.1097/MOL.0b013e32834f0f0c
NUTRITION AND METABOLISM: Edited by Paul Nestel and Ronald P. Mensink

Purpose of review ω-3 Fatty acids continue to be promoted as cardioprotective, generating an increased demand for these nutrients. Ocean-based supplies are limited, and so land-based sources are being sought. Stearidonic acid-fortified soybean oil may help to meet this demand.

Recent findings Stearidonic acid has been shown in animal and human studies to be more effective than its precursor, α-linolenic acid, in enriching membranes with eicosapentaenoic acid. Hence, stearidonic acid can serve as a ‘pro-eicosapentaenoic acid’.

Summary Stearidonic acid-fortified soybean oil may be able to help close the gap between actual and recommended intakes of ω-3 fatty acids in an environmentally friendly manner.

aSanford School of Medicine, University of South Dakota, Sioux Falls, South Dakota

bHealth Diagnostic Laboratory Inc., Richmond, Virginia, USA

Correspondence to William S. Harris, PhD, 737 N. 5th St, Ste 103, Richmond, VA 23219, USA. Tel: +1 804 343 2718, ext. 713; e-mail:

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