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  Long-chain omega-3 fatty acids improve brain function and structure in older adults

Witte, V., Kerti, L., Hermannstädter, H. M., Fiebach, J. B., Schreiber, S. J., Schuchardt, J. P., et al. (2014). Long-chain omega-3 fatty acids improve brain function and structure in older adults. Cerebral Cortex, 24(11), 3059-3068. doi:10.1093/cercor/bht163.

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 Creators:
Witte, Veronica1, 2, 3, Author              
Kerti, Lucia1, Author
Hermannstädter, Henrike M.1, Author
Fiebach, Jochen B.1, 4, Author
Schreiber, Stepahn J.1, Author
Schuchardt, Jan Philipp5, Author
Hahn, Andreas5, Author
Flöel, Agnes1, 2, 4, Author
Affiliations:
1Department of Neurology, Charité University Medicine Berlin, Germany, ou_persistent22              
2NeuroCure Cluster of Excellence, Charité University Medicine Berlin, Germany, ou_persistent22              
3Department Neurology, MPI for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences, Max Planck Society, Leipzig, DE, ou_634549              
4Center for Stroke Research, Charité University Medicine Berlin, Germany, ou_persistent22              
5Institute of Food Science and Human Nutrition, Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz University, Hannover, Germany, ou_persistent22              

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Free keywords: Cognitive aging; Diffusion tensor imaging; Executive functions; Intima media thickness; Voxel-based morphometry
 Abstract: Higher intake of seafish or oil rich in long-chain omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (LC-n3-FA) may be beneficial for the aging brain. We tested in a prospective interventional design whether high levels of supplementary LC-n3-FA would improve cognition, and addressed potential mechanisms underlying the effects. Sixty-five healthy subjects (50–75 years, 30 females) successfully completed 26 weeks of either fish oil (2.2 g/day LC-n3-FA) or placebo intake. Before and after the intervention period, cognitive performance, structural neuroimaging, vascular markers, and blood parameters were assayed. We found a significant increase in executive functions after LC-n3-FA compared with placebo (P = 0.023). In parallel, LC-n3-FA exerted beneficial effects on white matter microstructural integrity and gray matter volume in frontal, temporal, parietal, and limbic areas primarily of the left hemisphere, and on carotid intima media thickness and diastolic blood pressure. Improvements in executive functions correlated positively with changes in omega-3-index and peripheral brain-derived neurotrophic factor, and negatively with changes in peripheral fasting insulin. This double-blind randomized interventional study provides first-time evidence that LC-n3-FA exert positive effects on brain functions in healthy older adults, and elucidates underlying mechanisms. Our findings suggest novel strategies to maintain cognitive functions into old age.

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Language(s): eng - English
 Dates: 2013-06-242014-11
 Publication Status: Published in print
 Pages: -
 Publishing info: -
 Table of Contents: -
 Rev. Type: Peer
 Identifiers: DOI: 10.1093/cercor/bht163
PMID: 23796946
Other: Epub 2013
 Degree: -

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Title: Cerebral Cortex
Source Genre: Journal
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Publ. Info: New York, NY : Oxford University Press
Pages: - Volume / Issue: 24 (11) Sequence Number: - Start / End Page: 3059 - 3068 Identifier: ISSN: 1047-3211
CoNE: https://pure.mpg.de/cone/journals/resource/954925592440