Omega 3 Fatty Acid Enriched Chevon (Goat Meat) Lowers Plasma Cholesterol Levels and Alters Gene Expressions in Rats

January 1, 2014 Human Health and Nutrition Data 0 Comments

Omega 3 Fatty Acid Enriched Chevon (Goat Meat) Lowers Plasma Cholesterol Levels and Alters Gene Expressions in Rats

Year: 2014
Authors: Ebrahimi, M. Rajion, A. YongMeng, G. Farjam, A.S.
Publication Name: Biomed Res Int.
Publication Details: doi: 10.1155/2014/749341.


In this study, control chevon (goat meat) and omega 3 fatty acid enriched chevon were obtained from goats fed a 50 percent oil palm frond diet and commercial goat concentrate for 100 days, respectively. Goats fed the 50 percent oil palm frond diet contained high amounts of alpha linolenic acid (ALA) in their meat compared to goats fed the control diet. The chevon was then used to prepare two types of pellets (control or enriched chevon) that were then fed to twenty male four month old Sprague Dawley rats (n of 10 in each group) for 12 weeks to evaluate their effects on plasma cholesterol levels, tissue fatty acids, and gene expression. There was a significant increase in ALA and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) in the muscle tissues and liver of the rats fed the enriched chevon compared with the control group. Plasma cholesterol also decreased (P less than 0.05) in rats fed the enriched chevon compared to the control group. The rat pellets containing enriched chevon significantly upregulated the key transcription factor PPARgamma  and downregulated SREBP1c expression relative to the control group. The results showed that the omega3 fatty acid enriched chevon increased the omega3 fatty acids in the rat tissues and altered PPARgamma and SREBP1c genes expression. (Authors abstract)
Researchers had succeeded in feeding goats with linseed oil and polyphenol rich oil palm frond (OPF) diets which reduced microbial bio hydrogenation in the rumen and
producing chevon (goat meat) containing increased levels of alpha linolenic acid . However, it remained to be determined whether consuming this “modified” chevon containing the higher levels of ALA would also, in turn, increase the levels of the omega 3 fatty acids (FAs) in the tissues of the consumer, which could produce measurable positive health benefits. Making foods rich in ALA can also help increase the level of this FA in the diet.  The researchers hypothesize that omega 3 enriched chevon can improve lipid metabolism through regulation of polyunsaturated FA (PUFA) metabolism, thereby altering transcription factors like peroxisome proliferators activated receptors (PPARs) and their downstream genes like Sterol Regulatory Element Binding Proteins (SREBPs). In this study, the effects of feeding pellets made from omega 3 enriched chevon on the plasma cholesterol levels and tissue FA profiles in rats, as bio indicators, were investigated. Additionally, the effects of these diets on the hepatic expression of transcription factors and genes involved in FA metabolism were also evaluated.
The  results suggest that eating enriched chevon with omega 3 FA increases the amount of the omega 3 FA in the muscle tissue, heart, and liver of rats. The findings also suggest a statistically significant increase in the ALA content of the rat muscle tissue, liver, and heart as a result of feeding on the omega3 enriched chevon. The lower plasma cholesterol levels in the enriched chevon diets could be likely due to the higher omega3 FA in that diet compared to the CON diet. These results imply a protective role of omega3 FAs from ALA sources, including that from enriched chevon.  PPAR gamma is an activator of FA synthesis and storage and PPAR beta is a regulator of FA oxidation in muscles which play different roles in metabolism . PPARgamma has beneficial effects on cholesterol levels . Previously, it has been shown that omega 3 FAs protect against high fat induced hepatic insulin resistance and reduce triglyceride (TG) via a PPARs gene regulation. The ALA rich diet up regulated hepatic PPAR gamma along with a decrease in cholesterol levels in the omega 3 enriched chevon group.  In conclusion, the ALA rich diet showed a cholesterol lowering effect in the rat plasma. This study was the first to look at the effects of eating a high ALA diet of enriched chevon and the impact on long chain omega 3 FA composition of EPA and DHA in the FA of the muscle tissue, liver, and heart using a rat model. The results show that an increase in DHA occurs in the muscle tissue and liver of rats fed a high ALA diet of enriched omega 3 chevon. Changing a part of the goat’s diet can increase the omega 3 concentrations in the finished chevon which in turn increased the tissue omega 3 fatty acid concentrations and decreased plasma cholesterol when fed to rats; the latter correlated with an up regulation of PPARgamma and a down regulation of SREBP  1c gene expressions. (Editors comments)

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