Cookies on this website

We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you click 'Accept all cookies' we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies and you won't see this message again. If you click 'Reject all non-essential cookies' only necessary cookies providing core functionality such as security, network management, and accessibility will be enabled. Click 'Find out more' for information on how to change your cookie settings.

Asthma is one of the most common and prevalent problems worldwide affecting over 300 million individuals. There is some evidence from observational and intervention studies to suggest a beneficial effect of n-3 PUFA in inflammatory diseases, specifically asthma. Marine-based n-3 PUFA have therefore been proposed as a possible complementary/alternative therapy for asthma. The proposed anti-inflammatory effects of n-3 fatty acids may be linked to a change in cell membrane composition. This altered membrane composition following n-3 fatty acid supplementation (primarily EPA and DHA) can modify lipid mediator generation via the production of eicosanoids with a reduced inflammatory potential/impact. A recently identified group of lipid mediators derived from EPA including E-series resolvins are proposed to be important in the resolution of inflammation. Reduced inflammation attenuates the severity of asthma including symptoms (dyspnoea) and exerts a bronchodilatory effect. There have been no major health side effects reported with the dietary supplementation of n-3 fatty acids or their mediators; consequently supplementing with n-3 fatty acids is an attractive non-pharmacological intervention which may benefit asthma.

Original publication




Journal article


Nutr Res Rev

Publication Date





1 - 16


AA, AHR airway hyper-responsiveness, ALA α-linolenic acid, Asthma, COX cyclo-oxygenase, EIB exercise-induced bronchoconstriction, FEV1 forced expiratory volume in 1 s, FeNO fractional exhaled NO, Fish oils, Inflammation, LA linoleic acid, LOX lipoxygenase, LT leukotriene, LX lipoxin, NOS NO synthase, Omega-3 fatty acids, PD protectin, PEF peak expiratory flow, Rv resolvin, arachidonic acid, n-3 Fatty acids, Asthma, Dietary Supplements, Eicosanoids, Fatty Acids, Omega-3, Humans, Inflammation