Metabolism of orally fed [3H]-eicosapentaenoic and [14C]-arachidonic acid in essential fatty acid-deficient rats.
The metabolism of individual polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA) may be influenced differently by nutritional status and nutritional intake. In normal rats, radioactive arachidonic acid (20:4(n-6), is preferentially retained in tissue phospholipids compared to linoleic (18:2(n-6), or eicosapentaenoic acid (20:5(n-3). This study compares the fate of 20:4(n-6) and 20:5(n-3) acids in essential fatty acid-deficient (EFAD) rats. [3H]-20:5 and [14C]-20:4 were fed in a fish oil emulsion to EFAD rats. Tissue lipids were analysed for radioactivity at 1, 2 and 4 h. The conversion of [3H]-20:5 to docosapentaenoic acid (22:5) and docosahexaenoic acid (22:6) was examined using high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC). The recovery of 3H in small intestine was lower than that of 14C (26 vs. 36% after 4 h, p