Research: ZHANG and COLLEAGUES,

Listed in Issue 196

Abstract

ZHANG and COLLEAGUES, State Key Laboratory of Medical Neurobiology, Anesthesiology Department of Huanshan Hospital, Fudan University, Shanghai 200032, China review the metabolism of Omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (n-3 PUFAs) in the brain and highlight current understanding of the neuroprotective effects of n-3 PUFAs against cerebral ischemia and neurodegenerative disorders, such as Alzheimer's disease and Parkinson's disease.

Background

Omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (n-3 PUFAs) are a group of essential fatty acids that serve as energy substrates and integral membrane components, and therefore play crucial roles in the maintenance of normal neurological function.

Methodology

Recent studies show that n-3 PUFAs display neuroprotective properties and exert beneficial effects on the cognitive function with aging. The brain's need of n-3 PUFAs is predominantly met by the blood delivery due to their limited synthesis in the brain.

Results

The present review focuses on the metabolism of n-3 PUFAs in the brain, including their accumulation and turnover.

Conclusion

The authors also highlight the current understanding of the neuroprotective effects of n-3 PUFAs against cerebral ischemia and neurodegenerative disorders, such as Alzheimer's disease and Parkinson's disease.

References

Zhang W, Li P, Hu X, Zhang F, Chen J and Gao Y. Omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids in the brain: metabolism and neuroprotection. [Review] Source Frontiers in Bioscience. 17:2653-70, 2011.

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