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Distinct metabolism of linoleic and linolenic acids in liver and adipose tissues of finishing Normande cull cows

  • D. Gruffat (a1), M. Gobert (a1) (a2), D. Durand (a1) and D. Bauchart (a1)


Feeding strategies based on the addition of plant lipids rich in polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) in diets of bovines during the finishing period are common to enhance the nutritional value of meat. However, following rumen biohydrogenations, these FAs could still be metabolised in various tissues/organs involved in the FA metabolism such as the liver and adipose tissues (ATs), thus affecting their subsequent deposition in muscles. In this context, the objective of this study was to characterise the various metabolic pathways of linoleic acid (LA) and α-linolenic acid (ALA) in the liver and ATs (subcutaneous (SC) and inter-muscular (IM)) of Normande cull cows fed a diet supplemented (LR) or not (C) with extruded linseeds and rapeseeds, using the ex vivo incubated tissue slice method. Hepatic uptake of both FAs was higher with the LR than with the C diet (P = 0.02). For the two diets, ALA uptake was higher than that of LA (+46%, P = 0.04). ALA was much more degraded by β-oxidation (>50% of ALA present in cells) than LA (∼27%) with both diets (P = 0.015). Whatever the diet, ALA was not converted into longer and/or more unsaturated FA, whereas about 14% of LA was converted into 20:4n-6. The intensity of the esterification pathway was higher (+70%, P = 0.004) with the LR than with the C diet, for both FAs. Hepatic secretion of ALA as part of the very-low-density lipoprotein particles was lower than that of LA (−58% and −23% for C and LR diets respectively, P = 0.02). In SC and IM ATs, dietary lipid supplementation did not alter metabolic pathways of LA and ALA. They were efficiently taken up by ATs (>68% of FA present in the medium), with uptake being higher for IM than for SC AT (+12%, P = 0.01). Moreover, LA uptake by ATs was higher than ALA uptake (+10.7%, P = 0.027). Both FAs were mainly esterified (>97% of FA present in adipocytes) into neutral lipids (>85% of esterified FA). Around 9.5% of LA was converted into 20:4n-6, whereas only around 1.3% of ALA was converted into 20:5n-3. We concluded that, in our experimental conditions, liver was highly active in ALA catabolism limiting its subsequent deposition in muscles. However, bovine liver and ATs were inefficient at converting ALA into long-chain n-3 PUFA, but actively converted LA into 20:4n-6.


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Distinct metabolism of linoleic and linolenic acids in liver and adipose tissues of finishing Normande cull cows

  • D. Gruffat (a1), M. Gobert (a1) (a2), D. Durand (a1) and D. Bauchart (a1)


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