Researchers at the Fatty Acid Research Institute (FARI) and staff at Cedars-Sinai Medical Centers in Los Angeles and Orange County, California have published the first direct evidence that higher blood omega-3 levels can reduce the risk of death COVID-19 Infection. The report was published in the journal Prostaglandins, Leukotriene and Essential Fatty Acids on January 20, 2021.
There are several publications in the medical literature that hypothesize that omega-3 fatty acids should have beneficial effects in patients with COVID-19 infection. However, no peer-reviewed studies have been published to support this hypothesis.
This study included 100 patients who were hospitalized with COVID-19 and who had been retained for admission blood samples. Clinical results for these patients were obtained and the blood was analyzed for the omega-3 index (O3I, red blood cell membrane EPA +)gave Levels) at OmegaQuant Analytics (Sioux Falls, SD). Fourteen of the patients died.
The 100 patients were divided into four quartiles according to their O3I, with 25% of the patients in each quartile. There was one upper quartile death (ie 1 death in 25 patients with O3I> 5.7%), with 13 deaths in the remaining patients (ie 13 deaths in 75 patients with O3I <5.7%).
In age- and sex-adjusted regression analyzes, those in the top quartile (O3I> 5.7%) were 75% less likely to die than those in the bottom three quartiles (p = 0.07). In other words, the relative risk of death in people with a lower O3I (<5.7%) was about four times higher than in people with higher values.
“While this pilot study does not meet the standard statistical significance thresholds, it strongly suggests – along with several references to the anti-inflammatory effects of EPA and DHA – that these nutritionally available marine fatty acids can contribute to reducing the risk of adverse outcomes in COVID- 19 decrease patients. Clearly, larger studies are needed to confirm these preliminary results, ”said Dr. Arash Asher, the lead author of this study.
Clemens von Schacky, MD (CEO, Omegametrix GmbH, Martinsried, Germany, and not involved in the study) agreed with Dr. Asher, cardiology researcher and co-developer of Dr. Harris from the Omega-3 Index, to: “Asher et al. have shown that a low omega-3 index could be a strong predictor of death from COVID-19. While encouraging, its findings clearly need to be repeated. “
Omega-3 expert James H. O’Keefe Jr. (director of preventive cardiology, Mid America Heart Institute of Saint Luke, Kansas City, MO, also not involved in the study) noted, “An excessive inflammatory response, the so-called “cytokine storm” is a fundamental mediator for severe COVID-19 disease. Omega-3 fatty acids (DHA and EPA) have potent anti-inflammatory activities, and this pilot study provides evidence that these fatty acids may dampen the cytokine storm of COVID-19. “
The FARI research team is currently looking for means to expand on these preliminary observations. Individuals and organizations wishing to support this research are encouraged to visit FARI’s donation page.
Reference: “Omega-3 Fatty Acids in the Blood and Death from COVID-19: A Pilot Study” by Arash Asher, Nathan L. Tintle, Michael Myers, Laura Lockshon, Heribert Bacareza, and William S. Harris, January 20, 2021, Prostaglandins, Leukotrienes and essential fatty acids.
DOI: 10.1016 / j.plefa.2021.102250
The Fatty Acid Research Institute (FARI) is a non-profit research and education foundation. FARI was founded to accelerate the discovery of the health effects of fatty acids, particularly the long chain omega-3 fatty acids EPA and DHA. FARI researchers and scientists will be single-mindedly focused on publishing high quality research studies on the diverse relationships between fat acid Human (and animal) health levels and outcomes. These studies will improve the ability to predict disease risk and, more importantly, suggest ways to reduce risk by changing our diet and / or supplementation regimen.