Omega-3 fatty acids ameliorate atherosclerosis by favorably altering monocyte subsets and limiting monocyte recruitment to aortic lesions

Amanda L. Brown, Xuewei Zhu, Shunxing Rong, Swapnil Shewale, Jeongmin Seo, Elena Boudyguina, Abraham K. Gebre, Martha A. Alexander-Miller, John S. Parks

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

49 Scopus citations

Abstract

Objective-Fish oil, containing omega-3 fatty acids, attenuates atherosclerosis. We hypothesized that omega-3 fatty acid-enriched oils are atheroprotective through alteration of monocyte subsets and their trafficking into atherosclerotic lesions. Methods and Results-Low-density lipoprotein receptor knockout and apolipoprotein E -/- mice were fed diets containing 10% (calories) palm oil and 0.2% cholesterol, supplemented with an additional 10% palm oil, echium oil (containing 18:4 n-3), or fish oil. Compared with palm oil-fed low-density lipoprotein receptor knockout mice, echium oil and fish oil significantly reduced plasma cholesterol, splenic Ly6C hi monocytosis by ≈50%, atherosclerosis by 40% to 70%, monocyte trafficking into the aortic root by ≈50%, and atherosclerotic lesion macrophage content by 30% to 44%. In contrast, atherosclerosis and monocyte trafficking into the artery wall was not altered by omega-3 fatty acids in apolipoprotein E -/- mice; however, Ly6C hi splenic monocytes positively correlated with aortic root intimal area across all diet groups. In apolipoprotein E -/- mice, fish oil reduced the percentage of blood Ly6C hi monocytes, despite an average 2-fold higher plasma cholesterol relative to palm oil. Conclusion-The presence of splenic Ly6C hi monocytes parallels the appearance of atherosclerotic disease in both low-density lipoprotein receptor knockout and apolipoprotein E -/- mice. Furthermore, omega-3 fatty acids favorably alter monocyte subsets independently from effects on plasma cholesterol and reduce monocyte recruitment into atherosclerotic lesions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2122-2130
Number of pages9
JournalArteriosclerosis, thrombosis, and vascular biology
Volume32
Issue number9
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 1 2012

Keywords

  • Ly6C
  • echium oil
  • fish oil
  • inflammation
  • monocytosis
  • omega-3 fatty acids

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine

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