Features Partner Sites Information LinkXpress
Sign In
Demo Company

Omega-3 Fatty Acids of No Help Treating Multiple Sclerosis

By BiotechDaily International staff writers
Posted on 03 May 2012
Print article
A new study claims that supplementation with ω−3 fatty acids had no beneficial effects on multiple sclerosis (MS) disease activity.

Researchers at Haukeland University Hospital (Bergen, Norway), the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU; Trondheim), and other institutions conducted a randomized, double blind, placebo-controlled trial at 13 public neurology departments in Norway totaling 92 patients (ages 18 to 55) with relapsing-remitting MS. The patients were given either 1,350 mg of eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and 850 mg docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) every day, or placebo. After the first six months of the trial, all patients were also given 44 mcg of interferon beta-1a three times a week for another 18 months.

The primary outcome measure was magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) disease activity, as measured by the number of new enhancing lesions during the first six months. Secondary outcome measures included MRI disease activity after 9 and 24 months, relapse rate, disability progression, fatigue, quality of life, and safety.

The results showed that the cumulative number of MRI lesions during the first six months were similar in the ω−3 fatty acids and placebo groups. No difference in relapse rate was detected after six or 24 months; the proportion of patients without disability progression was 70% in both groups. No differences were detected in fatigue or quality-of-life scores, and no safety concerns appeared. Serum analyses of fatty acids showed an increase in ω−3 fatty in the patients treated with ω−3 fatty acids compared with the placebo group. The researchers found that the lesion rate ratio was significantly lower only after interferon treatment. The study was published ahead of print on April 16, 2012, in the Archives of Neurology.

“Omega-3 fatty acids have no beneficial effects on disease activity in MS, either as monotherapy or in combination with interferon beta-1a,” concluded lead author Oivind Torkildsen, MD, PhD, and colleagues of the Norwegian Multiple Sclerosis Competence Center. “As expected, the MRI disease activity was significantly reduced when interferon beta-1a was introduced.”

MS is an inflammatory disease in which the fatty myelin sheaths around the axons of the brain and spinal cord are damaged, leading to demyelination and scarring, as well as a broad spectrum of signs and symptoms resulting from the inability of nerve cells in the brain and spinal cord to communicate with each other effectively. Disease onset usually occurs in young adults, and it is more common in women.

Related Links:

Haukeland University Hospital
Norwegian University of Science and Technology

Print article



view channel
Image: Left: Green actin fibers create architecture of the cell. Right: With cytochalasin D added, actin fibers disband and reform in the nuclei (Photo courtesy of the University of North Carolina).

Actin in the Nucleus Triggers a Process That Directs Stem Cells to Mature into Bone

A team of cell biologists has discovered why treatment of mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) with the mycotoxin cytochalasin D directs them to mature into bone cells (osteoblasts) rather than into fat cells... Read more


view channel

Molecular Light Shed on “Dark” Cellular Receptors

Scientists have created a new research tool to help find homes for orphan cell-surface receptors, toward better understanding of cell signaling, developing new therapeutics, and determining causes of drug side-effects. The approach may be broadly useful for discovering interactions of orphan receptors with endogenous, naturally... Read more

Lab Technologies

view channel
Image: The new ambr 15 fermentation micro-bioreactor system was designed to enhance microbial strain screening applications (Photo courtesy of Sartorius Stedim Biotech).

New Bioreactor System Streamlines Strain Screening and Culture

Biotechnology laboratories working with bacterial cultures will benefit from a new automated micro bioreactor system that was designed to enhance microbial strain screening processes. The Sartorius... Read more


view channel

Purchase of Biopharmaceutical Company Will Boost Development of Nitroxyl-Based Cardiovascular Disease Drugs

A major international biopharmaceutical company has announced the acquisition of a private biotech company that specializes in the development of drugs for treatment of cardiovascular disease. Bristol-Myers Squibb Co. (New York, NY, USA) has initiated the process to buy Cardioxyl Pharmaceuticals Inc. (Chapel Hill, NC, USA).... Read more
Copyright © 2000-2015 Globetech Media. All rights reserved.