Cytokine levels affected by gamma-linolenic acid.


Dirks J, van Aswegen CH, du Plessis DJ




Prostaglandins Leukot Essent Fatty Acids


This study was undertaken to assess whether gamma-linolenic acid (GLA) in the form of evening primrose oil (EPO) could affect rat serum cytokines, interferon-gamma (IFN-gamma), monocyte chemotactic protein-1 (MCP-1) and tumour necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-alpha). The following diets were administered: control, glucan, Freund's adjuvant and glucan plus Freund's adjuvant with and without GLA. In the presence of GLA, the IFN-gamma and MCP-1 levels were significantly decreased in contrast to the control group of TNF-alpha, which was significantly stimulated. On account of interaction between diets and GLA, the remaining diet groups of TNF-alpha were either not affected or were inhibited in the presence of GLA. The observations indicate that GLA may modulate the level of serum IFN-gamma, MCP-1 and TNF-alpha, which may be a worthwhile line of treatment in certain human diseases.