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Cardioprotective Effects of Omega-3 Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids: Dichotomy between Experimental and Clinical Studies

Centre de Biomédecine, Hôpital du Sacré-Cœur de Montréal, Montréal, QC H4J 1C5, Canada
Département de Pharmacologie et Physiologie, Université de Montréal, Montréal, QC H3C 3J7, Canada
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Mar. Drugs 2018, 16(7), 234;
Received: 10 June 2018 / Revised: 22 June 2018 / Accepted: 3 July 2018 / Published: 10 July 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Marine Natural Products for Cardiovascular Disease)
PDF [876 KB, uploaded 10 July 2018]


The high-fat diet of North Americans has a major impact on cardiovascular disease occurrence. Notably, fatty acids have been identified as important factors that could modulate such diseases, especially myocardial infarction (MI). Experimentally, omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA) have demonstrated positive effects on cardiovascular disorders and have also shown cardioprotection by decreasing MI size. Although many animal experiments have clearly established the benefits of omega-3 PUFA, clinical studies have not reached similar conclusions. In fact, the findings of recent clinical investigations indicate that omega-3 PUFA play only a minor role in cardiovascular health. This dichotomy between experimental and clinical studies may be due to different parameters that are not taken into account in animal experiments. We have recently observed that the high consumption of omega-6 PUFA results in significant attenuation of the beneficial effect of omega-3 PUFA on MI. We believe that part of the dichotomy between experimental and clinical research may be related to the quantity of omega-6 PUFA ingested. This review of the data indicates the importance of considering omega-6 PUFA consumption in omega-3 PUFA studies. View Full-Text
Keywords: omega-3; omega-6; myocardial infarction; cardioprotection omega-3; omega-6; myocardial infarction; cardioprotection

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Desnoyers, M.; Gilbert, K.; Rousseau, G. Cardioprotective Effects of Omega-3 Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids: Dichotomy between Experimental and Clinical Studies. Mar. Drugs 2018, 16, 234.

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