The Influence of Moderate and High Dietary Long Chain Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids (LCPUFA) on Baboon Neonate Tissue Fatty Acids

Andrea T. Hsieh, Joshua C. Anthony, Deborah A. Diersen-Schade, Steven C. Rumsey, Peter Lawrence, Cun Li, Peter W. Nathanielsz, J. Thomas Brenna

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47 Scopus citations


Docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) and arachidonic acid (ARA) are now common ingredients in commercial infant formulas, however, the optimal levels have not been established. Our previous data showed that the current amount of DHA in U.S. term formulas, 0.3%w/w, is insufficient to normalize cerebral cortex DHA to levels in breastfed baboon neonate controls (Diauet al.: BMC Medicine 3: 11, 2005). Here, we report on the influence of higher formula DHA levels on 12-wk-old full-term baboon CNS and visceral organs. Fourteen nursery-reared baboons were randomized to one of three diets: control (C, no DHA-ARA); moderate LCPUFA (L, 0.33%DHA-0.67%ARA); high LCPUFA (L3, 1.00%DHA-0.67%ARA). DHA increased significantly in liver, heart, and plasma (all C “ L “ L3), RBC (C “ L, L3), and CNS regions: precentral gyrus (C “ L “ L3), frontal cortex, inferior and superior colliculi, globus pallidus, and caudate (all C “ L, L3). These data extend previous observations indicating that 1) tissue DHA is more sensitive to diet than ARA; 2) cerebral cortex DHA increases with higher levels of DHA than in present commercial formulas; and 3) basal ganglia and limbic system DHA saturate with levels of DHA currently available in formulas. These results imply that higher levels of DHA are necessary to normalize cortex DHA to those found in breastfed animals. Abbreviations: AdrAadrenic acid (22:4n-6); ARAarachidonic acid (20:4n-6); BWbody weight; Ccontrol formula: DHA (0%w/w), ARA (0%w/w); DHAdocosahexaenoic acid (22:6n-3); DPAn-37,10,13,16,19-docosapentaenoic acid (22:5n-3); DPAn-64,7,10,13,16-docosapentaenoic acid (22:5n-6); EPAeicosapentaenoic acid (20:5n-3); FAfatty acid; LLCPUFA moderate formula: DHA (0.33%), ARA (0.67%); L3LCPUFA high formula: DHA (1.00%), ARA (0.67%); LCPUFA(20 carbons) long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids; RBCred blood cells; SFAsaturated fatty acids; w/wweight ratio of FA to total FA.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)537-545
Number of pages9
JournalPediatric Research
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 2007

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health


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