Inhibitory mechanism of omega-3 fatty acids in pancreatic inflammation and apoptosis

Kyung Suk Park, Joo Weon Lim, Hyeyoung Kim

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

48 Citations (Scopus)


Oxidative stress is regarded as a major pathogenic factor in acute pancreatitis. Inflammation and apoptosis linked to oxidative stress has been implicated in cerulein-induced pancreatitis as an experimental model of acute pancreatitis. Recently, we found that reactive oxygen species mediate inflammatory cytokine expression and apoptosis of pancreatic acinar cells stimulated with cerulein. Omega-3 fatty acids show antioxidant action in various cells and tissues. In the present study, we investigated whether omega-3 fatty acids inhibit cytokine expression in cerulein-stimulated pancreatic acinar cells and whether omega-3 fatty acids suppress apoptotic cell death in pancreatic acinar cells exposed to hydrogen peroxide. We found that omega-3 fatty acids, such as docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) and α-linolenic acid (ALA), suppressed the expression of inflammatory cytokines (IL-1β, IL-6) and inhibited the activation of transcription factor activator protein-1 in cerulein-stimulated pancreatic acinar cells. DHA and ALA inhibited DNA fragmentation, inhibited the decrease in cell viability, and inhibited the expression of apoptotic genes (p53, Bax, apoptosis-inducing factor) induced by hydrogen peroxide in pancreatic acinar cells. In conclusion, omega-3 fatty acids may be beneficial for preventing oxidative stress-induced pancreatic inflammation and apoptosis by inhibiting inflammatory cytokine and apoptotic gene expression of pancreatic acinar cells.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationNatural Compounds and Their Role in Apoptotic Cell Signaling Pathways
PublisherBlackwell Publishing Inc.
Number of pages7
ISBN (Print)9781573317375
Publication statusPublished - 2009 Aug

Publication series

NameAnnals of the New York Academy of Sciences
ISSN (Print)0077-8923
ISSN (Electronic)1749-6632

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Neuroscience(all)
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • History and Philosophy of Science


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