The n-3 and n-6 polyunsaturated fatty acid composition of plasma phospholipids in pregnant women and their infants. relationship with maternal linoleic acid intake

P. Rump, G. Hornstra*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Nutrition and Toxicology Research Institute Maastricht, University of Maastricht, The Netherlands.

The availability of long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids during infancy has been related to neonatal growth and development. Fatty acid concentration at birth is an important predictor of postnatal level. The primary aim of this study was to provide a description of the distribution of n-3 and n-6 polyunsaturated fatty acids in the plasma phospholipid fraction of pregnant women remaining on a Western-style diet and their neonates. The plasma phospholipid polyunsaturated fatty acid composition was determined by gas-liquid chromatography in 889 mother-infant pairs. Blood samples were taken during the first, second and third trimester of pregnancy, at delivery, and from the umbilical vein at birth. Mean (+/- SD) fatty acid concentrations are reported in mg/l and as percentage of total fatty acids (% wt/wt). In addition, the 10th, 25th, 50th, 75th and 90th percentiles are given. The distribution of docosahexaenoic acid (22:6n-3) and arachidonic acid (20:4n-6) concentrations in umbilical plasma phospholipids is also reported as a function of gestational age and maternal linoleic acid intake during pregnancy. This data can be be used as a reference for future studies and may aid in identifying term infants with a relatively low long-chain polyene status at birth.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)32-39
Number of pages8
JournalClinical Chemistry and Laboratory Medicine
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2002

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