- William C. Sessa, Ph.D. Professor of Pharmacology, Yale University School of Medicine
Omega-3 fatty acids such as EPA and DHA are the major components of fish oil that are used to lower triglyceride levels in people with hypertriglyceridemia. In addition to lower triglycerides, drugs with varying ratios of EPA/DHA can reduce systemic inflammation but the importance of the EPA/DHA ratios in suppressing inflammation is not clear. To compare the anti-inflammatory potency of commercially available omega-3 products, OMAX3®1.
(EPA/DHA ratio 4:1), Lovaza® 1.
(ratio 1:1) and OmegaBrite®1.
(ratio 7:1) were tested side by side in a model of inflammation in macrophages; inflammatory cells that produce IL-b and TNF-α, critical cytokines that promote inflammation, arthritis and cardiovascular disease. Stimulation of macrophages with LPS increased the synthesis of both IL1-β and TNF-α. All omega-3 products used at identical concentrations suppressed the production of cytokines. However, the potency of OMAX3 was differentiated from the other products by strongly reducing IL1-β levels considered one of key inflammatory cytokines, compared to the other products with differing ratios of EPA/DHA. OMAX-3 almost completely abrogated IL1-β levels while IL1-β levels were 5-10 fold higher in Lovaza and OmegaBrite groups compared to OMAX3. OMAX3 also potently reduced the levels of TNF-α. Although all omega-3 products reduced cytokine production from macrophages, the differential effects of various EPA/DHA ratios on inflammatory cytokines was unanticipated. These results indicate OMAX3’s unique composition of EPA/DHA exerts a more potently anti-inflammatory effect.
William C. Sessa, Ph.D. Professor of Pharmacology
Yale University School of Medicine
Alfred Gilman Professor of Pharmacology and Professor of Medicine (Cardiology); Vice Chairman, Pharmacology; Director, Vascular Biology & Therapeutics Program
1989 Ph.D., Department of Pharmacology, New York Medical College, Valhalla, New York 10595; 1986 M.Sc., Department of Pharmacology, University of Rhode Island, Kingston, Rhode Island 02881; 1999 M.A. (honorary) Yale University, ;1984 B.S., Pharmacy, Philadelphia College of Pharmacy and Sciences, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19104. Dr. William Sessa can be reached at: 10 Amistad Street, Room 437, P.O. Box 208089, New Haven, CT 06520