Cerebral small vessel diseases (SVDs) are related to stroke or cognitive dysfunction. n-3-polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) such as eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) represent possible disease-modifying factors for cardiovascular disease or dementia. Our hypothesis was that a low proportion of plasma FAs would be associated with cerebral SVDs. We prospectively enrolled 220 patients with a first-episode cerebral infarction within 7. days after symptom onset. The composition of plasma FAs was analyzed by gas chromatography methods. The presence and burden of cerebral microbleeds (CMBs), high-grade white matter changes (HWCs), high-grade perivascular spaces (HPVSs), and asymptomatic lacunar infarctions (ALIs) were investigated. The mean proportion (±SD) was 2.0 ± 0.7 for EPA, 8.9 ± 1.5 for DHA, and 12.0 ± 2.1 for ∑ n-3-PUFAs. In total, 46 (20.9%) patients had CMBs, 64 (29.1 %) had HWCs, 57 (25.9%) had HPVSs, and 65 (29.5%) had ALIs. In univariate analyses, CMBs, HWCs, and HPVSs were each negatively correlated with the proportion of EPA, DHA, and ∑ n-3-PUFAs. In the multivariate analysis, a lower proportion of EPA, DHA and ∑ n-3-PUFAs was associated with the presence of CMBs, HWCs and HPVS, but not ALIs. Total SVDs score was inversely correlated with the proportion of EPA, DHA and ∑ n-3-PUFAs. Overall, we found an association between low proportions of plasma n-3-PUFAs and cerebral SVDs pathologies. Further studies are needed to explore the association and potential therapeutic role of FAs in cerebral SVDs.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
This work was supported by a grant from Ewha Womans University School of Medicine .
© 2015 Elsevier Inc.
- Cerebral microbleeds
- Fatty acids composition
- N-3-polyunsaturated fatty acids
- Perivascular spaces
- Small vessel disease
- White matter changes