The Lipid Research Group

Modified fatty acids

Studies on modified fatty acids and their role in lipid and glucose metabolism with an emphasis on the modification of mitochondrial function.

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The Lipid Research Group has for many years studied how fatty acids, and, in particular, omega-3 fatty acids will beneficially affect whole body lipid metabolism. They have provided important new knowledge regarding some unique modified fatty acids, known as thia fatty acids, which are metabolically very potent compared to the more abundant polyunsaturated fatty acids. Studies in different animal models and in several established cell lines have shown that modified sulphur containing fatty acids, such as tetradecylthioacetic acid (TTA), will beneficially affect metabolic parameters related to lipid metabolism. TTA may reduce hyperglycemia, attenuate insulin resistance, modify the inflammatoric response, decrease oxidative stress in addition to attenuating hypertension and inhibiting the growth of various cultured cell lines. The importance of an improved mitochondrial function for the pleiotropic effects of thia fatty acids have been documented. Studies on their molecular mechanisms of action is presently focused on the role of nuclear receptors in addition to metabolic pathway analysis using RNA microarrays, quantitative proteomics and lipidomics.