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Special Issue "Omega-3 Fatty Acids in Health and Disease: New Knowledge 2019"

A special issue of International Journal of Molecular Sciences (ISSN 1422-0067). This special issue belongs to the section "Bioactives and Nutraceuticals".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 31 December 2019.

Special Issue Editors

Guest Editor
Prof. Gabriella Calviello Website E-Mail
Institute of General Pathology, School of Medicine, Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore, Largo F. Vito, 1 – 00168 Rome, Italy
Interests: lipoprotein; cancer; dyslipidemia; inflammation; neurodegenerative diseases; nutrition; omega-3 fatty acids; sarcopenia
Guest Editor
Dr. Simona Serini Website E-Mail
Institute of General Pathology, School of Medicine, Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore, Largo F. Vito, 1 – 00168 Rome, Italy
Interests: lipoprotein; cancer; dyslipidemia; inflammation; neurodegenerative diseases; nutrition; omega-3 fatty acids; sarcopenia

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Over the past several decades, the beneficial properties of long-chain omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (ω-3 PUFA) have become extremely popular among the majority of the population. Usually, nutritionists recommend fish and nuts as dietary sources, and it has become a common practice to take ω-3 PUFA supplements for various accepted health reasons. On this basis, and in order to prevent them from becoming considered as a panacea on a non-scientific basis, there is an urgent need to gather recent scientific knowledge in the field, so as to precisely outline the current documented and specific ω-3 PUFA healthy properties as well as their possible harmful effects. This Special Issue intends to cover new advances in: (a) ω-3 PUFA effects and mechanisms of action in the areas of cardiovascular health, physiological development of the central nervous system, maintenance of cognitive functions, vision and mental health, as well as aging, immunity, inflammation, metabolism, epigenetics, and cancer; (b) the combination of ω-3 PUFA with other preventive or therapeutic agents; (c) genetic or metabolic conditions—and others—that could make individuals more/less sensitive to the effects of ω-3 PUFA; and (d) innovative ω-3 PUFA sources and delivery.

Prof. Dr. Gabriella Calviello
Dr. Simona Serini
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. International Journal of Molecular Sciences is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. There is an Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal. For details about the APC please see here. Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • aging
  • cancer
  • cardiovascular diseases
  • delivery
  • inflammation
  • nanomaterials
  • neurologic disorders
  • omega-3 PUFA
  • personalized medicine
  • prevention and therapy

Published Papers (8 papers)

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Research

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Open AccessArticle
Endogenous n-3 Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids Are Beneficial to Dampen CD8+ T Cell-Mediated Inflammatory Response upon the Viral Infection in Mice
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2019, 20(18), 4510; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms20184510 - 12 Sep 2019
Abstract
Omega-3 (n-3) polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) have been known to exert anti-inflammatory effects on various disease states. However, its effect on CD8+ T cell-mediated immunopathology upon viral infection has not been well elucidated yet. In this study, we investigated the [...] Read more.
Omega-3 (n-3) polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) have been known to exert anti-inflammatory effects on various disease states. However, its effect on CD8+ T cell-mediated immunopathology upon viral infection has not been well elucidated yet. In this study, we investigated the possible implication of n-3 PUFAs in CD8+ T cell responses against an acute viral infection. Infection of FAT-1 transgenic mice that are capable of synthesizing n-3 PUFAs from n-6 PUFAs with lymphocytic choriomeningitis virus (LCMV) resulted in significant reduction of anti-viral CD8+ T cell responses. Interestingly, expansion of adoptively transferred wild-type (WT) LCMV-specific T cell receptor (TCR) transgenic CD8+ (P14) T cells into FAT-1 mice was significantly decreased. Also, activation of anti-viral CD4+ helper T cells was reduced in FAT-1 mice. Importantly, P14 cells carrying the fat-1 gene that were adoptively transferred into WT mice exhibited a substantially decreased ability to proliferate and produce cytokines against LCMV infection. Together, n-3 PUFAs attenuated anti-viral CD8+ T cell responses against an acute viral infection and thus could be used to alleviate immunopathology mediated by the viral infection. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Omega-3 Fatty Acids in Health and Disease: New Knowledge 2019)
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Open AccessArticle
Omega-3 Fatty Acid-Derived Resolvin D2 Regulates Human Placental Vascular Smooth Muscle and Extravillous Trophoblast Activities
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2019, 20(18), 4402; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms20184402 - 07 Sep 2019
Abstract
Omega-3 fatty acids are important to pregnancy and neonatal development and health. One mechanism by which omega-3 fatty acids exert their protective effects is through serving as substrates for the generation of specialized pro-resolving lipid mediators (SPM) that potently limit and resolve inflammatory [...] Read more.
Omega-3 fatty acids are important to pregnancy and neonatal development and health. One mechanism by which omega-3 fatty acids exert their protective effects is through serving as substrates for the generation of specialized pro-resolving lipid mediators (SPM) that potently limit and resolve inflammatory processes. We recently identified that SPM levels are increased in maternal blood at delivery as compared to umbilical cord blood, suggesting the placenta as a potential site of action for maternal SPM. To explore this hypothesis, we obtained human placental samples and stained for the SPM resolvin D2 (RvD2) receptor GPR18 via immunohistochemistry. In so doing, we identified GPR18 expression in placental vascular smooth muscle and extravillous trophoblasts of the placental tissues. Using in vitro culturing, we confirmed expression of GPR18 in these cell types and further identified that stimulation with RvD2 led to significantly altered responsiveness (cytoskeletal changes and pro-inflammatory cytokine production) to lipopolysaccharide inflammatory stimulation in human umbilical artery smooth muscle cells and placental trophoblasts. Taken together, these findings establish a role for SPM actions in human placental tissue. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Omega-3 Fatty Acids in Health and Disease: New Knowledge 2019)
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Open AccessArticle
A Mixture of Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids ω-3 and ω-6 Reduces Melanoma Growth by Inhibiting Inflammatory Mediators in the Murine Tumor Microenvironment
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2019, 20(15), 3765; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms20153765 - 01 Aug 2019
Abstract
Background: Although it has been previously demonstrated that acute inflammation can promote the tumor growth of a sub-tumorigenic dose of melanoma cells through of 5-lipoxygenase inflammatory pathway and its product leukotriene B4, and also that the peritumoral treatment with eicosapentaenoic acid and [...] Read more.
Background: Although it has been previously demonstrated that acute inflammation can promote the tumor growth of a sub-tumorigenic dose of melanoma cells through of 5-lipoxygenase inflammatory pathway and its product leukotriene B4, and also that the peritumoral treatment with eicosapentaenoic acid and its product, leukotriene B5, reduces the tumor development, the effect of the treatment by gavage with omega-3 and omega-6 in the tumor microenvironment favorable to melanoma growth associated with acute inflammation has never been studied. Methods: C57BL/6 mice were coinjected with 1 × 106 apoptotic cells plus 1 × 103 viable melanoma cells into the subcutaneous tissue and treated by gavage with omega-3-rich fish oil or omega-6-rich soybean oil or a mixture of these oils (1:1 ratio) during five consecutive days. Results: The treatment by gavage with a mixture of fish and soybean oils (1:1 ratio) both reduced the melanoma growth and the levels of leukotriene B4 (LTB4), prostaglandin E2 (PGE2), PGE2/prostaglandin E3 (PGE3) ratio, and CXC ligand 1 (CXCL1) and increased the levels of interleukin 10 (IL-10) to IL-10/CXCL1 ratio in the melanoma microenvironment. Conclusion: The oral administration of a 1:1 mixture of fish oil and soybean oil was able to alter the release of inflammatory mediators that are essential for a microenvironment favorable to the melanoma growth in mice, whereas fish oil or soybean oil alone was ineffective. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Omega-3 Fatty Acids in Health and Disease: New Knowledge 2019)
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Open AccessArticle
Comparison of the Substrate Preferences of ω3 Fatty Acid Desaturases for Long Chain Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2019, 20(12), 3058; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms20123058 - 22 Jun 2019
Cited by 1
Abstract
Omega-3 long chain polyunsaturated fatty acids (ω3 LC-PUFAs) such as eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA; 20:5ω3) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA; 22:6ω3) are important fatty acids for human health. These ω3 LC-PUFAs are produced from their ω3 precursors by a set of desaturases and elongases involved [...] Read more.
Omega-3 long chain polyunsaturated fatty acids (ω3 LC-PUFAs) such as eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA; 20:5ω3) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA; 22:6ω3) are important fatty acids for human health. These ω3 LC-PUFAs are produced from their ω3 precursors by a set of desaturases and elongases involved in the biosynthesis pathway and are also converted from ω6 LC-PUFA by omega-3 desaturases (ω3Ds). Here, we have investigated eight ω3-desaturases obtained from a cyanobacterium, plants, fungi and a lower animal species for their activities and compared their specificities for various C18, C20 and C22 ω6 PUFA substrates by transiently expressing them in Nicotiana benthamiana leaves. Our results showed hitherto unreported activity of many of the ω3Ds on ω6 LC-PUFA substrates leading to their conversion to ω3 LC-PUFAs. This discovery could be important in the engineering of EPA and DHA in heterologous hosts. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Omega-3 Fatty Acids in Health and Disease: New Knowledge 2019)
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Open AccessArticle
Elevated AA/EPA Ratio Represents an Inflammatory Biomarker in Tumor Tissue of Metastatic Colorectal Cancer Patients
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2019, 20(8), 2050; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms20082050 - 25 Apr 2019
Abstract
Chronic inflammation increases the risk of developing certain types of cancer, such as colorectal cancer (CRC). The oxidative metabolism of polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) has a strong effect on colonic tumorigenesis and the levels of arachidonic acid (AA) and eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) can [...] Read more.
Chronic inflammation increases the risk of developing certain types of cancer, such as colorectal cancer (CRC). The oxidative metabolism of polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) has a strong effect on colonic tumorigenesis and the levels of arachidonic acid (AA) and eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) can contribute to the development of an inflammatory microenvironment. Aim of this study was to evaluate the possible differences in the AA/EPA ratio tissue levels between CRC patients with and without synchronous metastases. Moreover, the expression of the most important inflammatory enzymes and mediators, linked with the AA/EPA ratio, have been also assessed. Sixty-eight patients with CRC were enrolled in the study, of which 33 patients with synchronous metastasis. Fatty acid profile analysis in tissue samples was done to examine the levels of AA and EPA. High levels of the AA/EPA ratio were detected in tumor tissue of patients with metastatic CRC. Moreover, an increase of expression of the main enzymes and mediators involved in inflammation was also detected in the same samples. The lipidomic approach of inflammation allows to evaluate lipid homeostasis changes that occur in cancer and in its metastatic process, in order to identify new biomarkers to be introduced into clinical practice. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Omega-3 Fatty Acids in Health and Disease: New Knowledge 2019)
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Review

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Open AccessReview
Omega-3 Fatty Acids and Neurodegenerative Diseases: New Evidence in Clinical Trials
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2019, 20(17), 4256; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms20174256 - 30 Aug 2019
Abstract
A nutritional approach could be a promising strategy to prevent or slow the progression of neurodegenerative diseases such as Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s disease, since there is no effective therapy for these diseases so far. The beneficial effects of omega-3 fatty acids are now [...] Read more.
A nutritional approach could be a promising strategy to prevent or slow the progression of neurodegenerative diseases such as Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s disease, since there is no effective therapy for these diseases so far. The beneficial effects of omega-3 fatty acids are now well established by a plethora of studies through their involvement in multiple biochemical functions, including synthesis of anti-inflammatory mediators, cell membrane fluidity, intracellular signaling, and gene expression. This systematic review will consider epidemiological studies and clinical trials that assessed the impact of supplementation or dietary intake of omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids on neurodegenerative diseases such as Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s diseases. Indeed, treatment with omega-3 fatty acids, being safe and well tolerated, represents a valuable and biologically plausible tool in the management of neurodegenerative diseases in their early stages. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Omega-3 Fatty Acids in Health and Disease: New Knowledge 2019)
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Open AccessReview
Omega-3 Docosahexaenoic Acid Is a Mediator of Fate-Decision of Adult Neural Stem Cells
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2019, 20(17), 4240; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms20174240 - 30 Aug 2019
Abstract
The mammalian brain is enriched with lipids that serve as energy catalyzers or secondary messengers of essential signaling pathways. Docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) is an omega-3 fatty acid synthesized de novo at low levels in humans, an endogenous supply from its precursors, and is [...] Read more.
The mammalian brain is enriched with lipids that serve as energy catalyzers or secondary messengers of essential signaling pathways. Docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) is an omega-3 fatty acid synthesized de novo at low levels in humans, an endogenous supply from its precursors, and is mainly incorporated from nutrition, an exogeneous supply. Decreased levels of DHA have been reported in the brains of patients with neurodegenerative diseases. Preventing this decrease or supplementing the brain with DHA has been considered as a therapy for the DHA brain deficiency that could be linked with neuronal death or neurodegeneration. The mammalian brain has, however, a mechanism of compensation for loss of neurons in the brain: neurogenesis, the birth of neurons from neural stem cells. In adulthood, neurogenesis is still present, although at a slower rate and with low efficiency, where most of the newly born neurons die. Neural stem/progenitor cells (NSPCs) have been shown to require lipids for proper metabolism for proliferation maintenance and neurogenesis induction. Recent studies have focused on the effects of these essential lipids on the neurobiology of NSPCs. This review aimed to introduce the possible use of DHA to impact NSPC fate-decision as a therapy for neurodegenerative diseases. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Omega-3 Fatty Acids in Health and Disease: New Knowledge 2019)
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Open AccessReview
Marine-Derived Omega-3 Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids and Heart Failure: Current Understanding for Basic to Clinical Relevance
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2019, 20(16), 4025; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms20164025 - 18 Aug 2019
Abstract
Heart failure (HF) is a rapidly growing global public health problem. Since HF results in high mortality and re-hospitalization, new effective treatments are desired. Although it remains controversial, omega 3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (n-3 PUFAs), such as the eicosapentaenoic acid and docosahexaenoic acid, [...] Read more.
Heart failure (HF) is a rapidly growing global public health problem. Since HF results in high mortality and re-hospitalization, new effective treatments are desired. Although it remains controversial, omega 3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (n-3 PUFAs), such as the eicosapentaenoic acid and docosahexaenoic acid, have been widely recognized to have benefits for HF. In a large-scale clinical trial regarding secondary prevention of HF by n-3 PUFA (GISSI-HF trial), the supplementation of n-3 PUFA significantly reduced cardiovascular mortality and hospitalization. Other small clinical studies proposed that n-3 PUFA potentially suppresses the ventricular remodeling and myocardial fibrosis, which thereby improves the ventricular systolic and diastolic function both in ischemic and non-ischemic HF. Basic investigations have further supported our understanding regarding the cardioprotective mechanisms of n-3 PUFA against HF. In these reports, n-3 PUFA has protected hearts through (1) anti-inflammatory effects, (2) intervention of cardiac energy metabolism, (3) modification of cardiac ion channels, (4) improvement of vascular endothelial response, and (5) modulation of autonomic nervous system activity. To clarify the pros and cons of n-3 PUFA on HF, we summarized recent evidence regarding the beneficial effects of n-3 PUFA on HF both from the clinical and basic studies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Omega-3 Fatty Acids in Health and Disease: New Knowledge 2019)
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