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Differential Effects of High-Fish Oil and High-Lard Diets on Cells and Cytokines Involved in the Inflammatory Process in Rat Insulin-Sensitive Tissues

Department of Biology, Via Mezzocannone 8, University of Naples "Federico II", 80134 Naples, Italy
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
These authors contributed equally to this work.
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2014, 15(2), 3040-3063;
Received: 7 October 2013 / Revised: 10 February 2014 / Accepted: 12 February 2014 / Published: 20 February 2014
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Nutritional Control of Metabolism)
PDF [1129 KB, uploaded 19 June 2014]


Dietary fat sources may differentially affect the development of inflammation in insulin-sensitive tissues during chronic overfeeding. Considering the anti-inflammatory properties of ω-3 fatty acids, this study aimed to compare the effects of chronic high-fish oil and high-lard diets on obesity-related inflammation by evaluating serum and tissue adipokine levels and histological features in insulin-sensitive tissues (white adipose tissue, skeletal muscle and liver). As expected, a high-lard diet induced systemic and peripheral inflammation and insulin resistance. Conversely, compared with a high-lard diet, a high-fish oil diet resulted in a lower degree of systemic inflammation and insulin resistance that were associated with a lower adipocyte diameter as well as lower immunoreactivity for transforming growth factor β 1 (TGFβ1) in white adipose tissue. A high-fish oil diet also resulted in a lower ectopic lipid depot, inflammation degree and insulin resistance in the skeletal muscle and liver. Moreover, a high-fish oil diet attenuated hepatic stellate cell activation and fibrogenesis in the liver, as indicated by the smooth muscle α-actin (α-SMA) and TGFβ1 levels. The replacement of lard (saturated fatty acids) with fish oil (ω-3 fatty acids) in chronic high-fat feeding attenuated the development of systemic and tissue inflammation. View Full-Text
Keywords: adipokines; α-SMA; TGF-β1; MCP1; dietary fat source adipokines; α-SMA; TGF-β1; MCP1; dietary fat source

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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0).

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Lionetti, L.; Mollica, M.P.; Sica, R.; Donizzetti, I.; Gifuni, G.; Pignalosa, A.; Cavaliere, G.; Putti, R. Differential Effects of High-Fish Oil and High-Lard Diets on Cells and Cytokines Involved in the Inflammatory Process in Rat Insulin-Sensitive Tissues. Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2014, 15, 3040-3063.

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