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Open AccessReview

Omega-3 Fatty Acids in Modern Parenteral Nutrition: A Review of the Current Evidence

Stanley Dudrick’s Memorial Hospital, General Surgery Unit, Skawina 32-050, Poland
Academic Editors: Lindsay Brown, Bernhard Rauch and Hemant Poudyal
J. Clin. Med. 2016, 5(3), 34;
Received: 12 December 2015 / Revised: 10 February 2016 / Accepted: 1 March 2016 / Published: 7 March 2016
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Omega-3 Fatty Acids in Health and Disease)
PDF [260 KB, uploaded 7 March 2016]


Intravenous lipid emulsions are an essential component of parenteral nutrition regimens. Originally employed as an efficient non-glucose energy source to reduce the adverse effects of high glucose intake and provide essential fatty acids, lipid emulsions have assumed a larger therapeutic role due to research demonstrating the effects of omega-3 and omega-6 polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA) on key metabolic functions, including inflammatory and immune response, coagulation, and cell signaling. Indeed, emerging evidence suggests that the effects of omega-3 PUFA on inflammation and immune response result in meaningful therapeutic benefits in surgical, cancer, and critically ill patients as well as patients requiring long-term parenteral nutrition. The present review provides an overview of the mechanisms of action through which omega-3 and omega-6 PUFA modulate the immune-inflammatory response and summarizes the current body of evidence regarding the clinical and pharmacoeconomic benefits of intravenous n-3 fatty acid-containing lipid emulsions in patients requiring parenteral nutrition. View Full-Text
Keywords: parenteral nutrition; omega-3 fatty acids; omega-3 PUFA; lipid emulsions parenteral nutrition; omega-3 fatty acids; omega-3 PUFA; lipid emulsions
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).
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Klek, S. Omega-3 Fatty Acids in Modern Parenteral Nutrition: A Review of the Current Evidence. J. Clin. Med. 2016, 5, 34.

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