Do you take omega-3 fatty acids?

In MS compromised blood-brain barrier (BBB) function contributes to inflammatory T cell migration into the central nervous system. 

An enzyme called matrix metalloproteinase-9 (MMP-9) is associated with BBB disruption and subsequent T cell migration into the CNS. 
MMP-9 breaks down the proteins that keep the BBB intact.
MMP-9 levels correlate well with relapses and MRI activity in MS’ers and is potentially a very useful biomarker of disease activity.

In this study omega-3 fatty acids significantly decreased MMP-9 production, MMP-9 activity, and significantly inhibited human T cell migration.

“Why is this study important? It supports the testing of omega-3 essential fatty acids as a treatment in MS. The good news is that an exploratory phase 2 study has been done in Norway and the results should be presented at ECTRIMS.”

Clinical trial: Omega-3 Fatty Acid Treatment in Multiple Sclerosis, Haukeland University Hospital

“Inhibition of MMP-9 production and reduced T cell migration across the BBB is one of the ways interferon-beta is thought to work.”

CoI: nil

7 thoughts on “Do you take omega-3 fatty acids?”

  1. This is what does my head in about MS. It's like it's caused by everything and nothing.Sometimes it's a virus, then it's smoking, then sunlight, then genes, then location of birth, then social-class you're born in to. Now it's perhaps not eating enough steamed fish in life.Any chance it's a disease caused by using the mobile phone too much, or maybe religion!Nothing about this disease surprises me anymore other than the fact that scientists continue to shoot in the dark for silly answers.

  2. Sometimes what looks like "shooting in the dark for silly answers" ends up as something very valuable as we found with cannabis. Very often the greatest breakthroughs come from the unlikeliest sources.Serendipity can be a great thing

  3. I take 7 grams of very high quality fish oil per day and have done for a year and a half. Meantime all of my lesions have literally disappeared with no scarring. No further relapses and docs scratching their heads. Needless to say I plan on continuing with "therapy" and three months ago stopped rebif. I am optimist though understand no concrete proof for the moment.

  4. That is a lot of fish oil. My capsules are 1 gm each and contain 300 mg EPA, 200 mg DHA.Would 7 gms of fish oil be 7 capsules or 14 capsules?

  5. Sorry took so long to reply. I take Barry Sear's Enerzona brand RX Omega 3. 4 capsules equal 2,5 g fatti acids – epa and dha. Hope this helps!

  6. An abstract from the phase II Omega-3 fatty acid study conducted in Norway: Kjell-Morten Myhr, Sjur Reinertsen, Bergen, Norway, Antonie Giæver Beiske, Lørenskog, Norway, Harald Hovdal, Trondheim, Norway, Rune Midgard, Molde, Norway, Frøydis Dalene, Skien, Norway, Jan Schepel, Haugesund, Norway, Grete Kleveland, Lillehammer, Norway, Halfdan Kierulf, Oslo, Norway, Randi Eikeland, Arendal, Norway, Alla Bru, Stavanger, Norway, Olaf Henriksen, Bodø, Norway, Terje Kristensen,, Fredrikstad, Norway, Astrid Edland, Ingrid Bjørnå, Drammen, Norway , Søren Jacob Bakke, Oslo, Norway, Tom Pedersen, Tønsberg, Norway, Finn Lilleås, Bård Bjørnarå, Inge Christoffer Olsen, Rita Malmo Nilsen, Oslo, Norway, Kristian Bjerve, Trondheim, NorwayOBJECTIVE: To analyze the efficacy of omega-3 fatty acids treatment in relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis (RRMS). BACKGROUND: Polyunsaturated fatty acids have been reported to be beneficial for MS patients. We performed a randomized, placebo-controlled trial to evaluate the efficacy of omega-3 fatty acids in RRMS. DESIGN/METHODS: A total of 92 RRMS patients were randomized for 6 months daily treatment with omega-3 fatty acids (Triomar) or placebo (corn oil) capsules. After 6 months, both groups received in addition interferon-beta (IFNB) 44 mcg sc (Rebif) thrice weekly for another 18 months. Monthly gadolinium enhanced magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) was performed for 9 months and after 12 and 24 months. We recorded relapse rate, disability progression (Expanded Disability Status Scale – EDSS), fatigue (Fatigue Severity Scale – FSS), quality of life (QoL, SF-36), Multiple Sclerosis Functional Composite (MSFC) and safety. RESULTS: The cumulative number of enhancing MRI lesions during the first 6 months were similar in the omega-3 group compared to the placebo group (p=0.35). The number of new enhancing MRI lesions were significantly reduced (p<0.0001) after initiation of IFNB therapy, similar in both groups. No differences in number of relapses were detected after 6 months (p=0.54) and 24 months (p=0.72). Disability progression (1.0 EDSS point) after 6 months were recorded in 13% of the omega-3 patients compared to 10% of the placebo patients (p=0.74), and 30 % in both groups had progressed after 24 months. No differences were detected in fatigue, MSFC or QoL scores, and no safety concerns appeared. Serum analyzes of fatty acids showed a significant increase in omega-3 fatty acids (p<0.001) and a corresponding reduction in omega-6 fatty acids (p<0.001) in the omega-3 treated patients compared to the placebo group. CONCLUSIONS/RELEVANCE: No beneficial effects on disease activity were detected from omega-3 fatty acids when compared to placebo (corn oil). IFNB reduced MRI disease activity as expected.

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