Dietary arachidonic acid and docosahexaenoic acid regulate liver fatty acid desaturase (FADS) alternative transcript expression in suckling piglets.Prostaglandins Leukot Essent Fatty Acids. 2013 Oct; 89(5):345-50.PL
Molecular regulation of fatty acid desaturase (Fads) gene expression by dietary arachidonic acid (ARA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) during early post-natal period, when the demand for long chain polyunsaturated fatty acids (LC-PUFA) is very high, has not been well defined. The objective of the current study was to determine regulation of liver Fads1, Fads2 and Fads3 classical (CS) and alternative transcripts (AT) expression by dietary ARA and DHA, within the physiological range present in human breast milk, in suckling piglets. Piglets were fed one of six milk replacer formula diets (formula-reared groups, FR) with varying ARA and DHA content from days 3-28 of age. The ARA/DHA levels of the six formula diets were as follows (% total fatty acid, FA/FA): (A1) 0.1/1.0; (A2) 0.53/1.0; (A3-D3) 0.69/1.0; (A4) 1.1/1.0; (D2) 0.67/0.62; and (D1) 0.66/0.33. The control maternal-reared (MR) group remained with the dam. Fads1 expression was not significantly different between FR and MR groups. Fads2 expression was down-regulated significantly in diets with 1:1 ratio of ARA:DHA, compared to MR. Fads2 AT1 expression was highly correlated to Fads2 expression. Fads3 AT7 was the only Fads3 transcript sensitive to dietary LC-PUFA intake and was up-regulated in the formula diets with lowest ARA and DHA contents compared to MR. Thus, the present study provides evidence that the proportion of dietary ARA:DHA is a significant determinant of Fads2 expression and LC-PUFA metabolism during the early postnatal period. Further, the data suggest that Fads3 AT7 may have functional significance when dietary supply of ARA and DHA are low during early development.