Association of fatty acid composition in serum phospholipids with metabolic syndrome and arterial stiffness

O. Y. Kim, H. H. Lim, M. J. Lee, J. Y. Kim, J. H. Lee

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Background and aim: We examined the association of fatty acid (FA) composition in serum phospholipids with the features of metabolic syndrome (MetS) and arterial stiffness. Methods: Korean men (n= 593, 30-79yrs) were categorized based on the number of MetS risk factors (RFs) and measured for the markers of MetS, serum phospholipid FA composition and brachial-ankle pulse wave velocity (baPWV), an index for the severity of arterial stiffness. Results: Insulin resistance (HOMA-IR), baPWV, LDL size, and adiponectin were significantly altered corresponding to the number of MetS RFs. The proportions of total monounsaturated FA, palmitoleic acid (16:1), oleic acid (18:1ω-9) and dihomo-γ-linolenic acid (DGLA, 20:3ω-6) in serum phospholipids, and DGLA/linoleic acid (LA) (20:3ω-6/18:2ω-6), deta9-desaturase activity (D9D-16: 16:1/16:0 and D9D-18: 18:1ω-9/18:0) significantly increased corresponding to the number of MetS RFs, but D5D (20:4ω-6/20:3ω-6) decreased. baPWV positively correlated with HOMA-IR, palmitic acid (16:0), oleic acid, D6D (18:3ω-6/18:2ω-6), DGLA/LA and D9D-18, and negatively with adiponectin, LDL size, LA, docosahexaenoic acid (DHA, 22:6ω-3) and D5D. Multiple stepwise regression models revealed that baPWV was significantly influenced by systolic blood pressure, age, body weight, triglyceride and LA in serum phospholipids (R2=0.378). Interestingly, baPWV (1419±1cm/s) and MetS (22%) were highest in individuals with lower proportion of LA (<12.361%) and higher proportion of DGLA (≥1.412%) in serum phospholipid FAs. Conclusion: The features of MetS significantly related to serum phosopholipid FA composition. Particularly, arterial stiffness was associated with LA additively together with DLGA. It may suggest a potential benefit of sufficient amounts of LA in serum or in diet can reduce cardiovascular risk.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)366-374
Number of pages9
JournalNutrition, Metabolism and Cardiovascular Diseases
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2013 Apr

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported by the National Research Foundation, Ministry of Education, Science and Technology (2010-0011003, Mid-career Researcher Program: 2010-0015017, M10642120002-06N4212-00210), Republic of Korea.

Funding Information:
We thank the research volunteers who participated in this study. This work was supported by the National Research Foundation (Mid-career Researcher Program: 2010-0015017, 2010-0011003 , and M10642120002-06N4212-00210 ), Republic of Korea.

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Nutrition and Dietetics
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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