eISSN: 1896-9151
ISSN: 1734-1922
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vol. 5

Plasma fatty acids in asthmatic children of Northern Greece

Katerina Haidopoulou
Maria Hatzistilianou
Anatoli Petridou
Vassilios Mougios
Theodouli Papastavrou
Victor Aivazis
Maria Eboriadou

Arch Med Sci 2009; 5, 1: 51-56
Online publish date: 2009/04/22
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Introduction: Asthma has genetic determinants and environmental influences. One of the latter is diet. The aim of this study was to determine whether the composition of plasma fatty acids, as a measure of dietary intake, differed in Greek children with and without asthma; also, to correlate plasma fatty acids with lung function.
Material and methods: The study included 2 groups of children. Group A consisted of 228 children with asthma and Control group B of 48 healthy children without asthma or atopy. Parents of the participating children completed a food frequency questionnaire. Total plasma fatty acids were determined by gas chromatography.
Results: According to our results total plasma fatty acids levels were similar in both groups. There were no significant differences in total saturated, monounsaturated, and polyunsaturated omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids levels. Children of the control group were found to have higher levels of steatic acid (18:00) and a-linolenic acid (18:3w3) and the difference was statistically significant (p < 0.01 and p = 0.022) respectively. In order to investigate a possible relationship between lung function and plasma fatty acid levels, we divided asthmatic children into two subgroups, according to spirometry results. Levels of omega-3 fatty acids 20:5 (eicosapentaenoic acid – EPA), 22:5 (docosapentaenoic acid – DPA) and 22:6 (docosahexaenoic acid – DHA) were found higher in asthmatic children with normal lung function (p < 0.01).
Conclusions: Our results indicate that there are differences in the consumption of some whole foods in the population of children we studied and that asthmatic children consumed less frequently fresh fruit and raw vegetables.

asthma, omega-3 fatty acids, omega-6 fatty acids, children

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