Methodological issues and inconsistencies in the field of omega-3 fatty acids research

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


There is growing interest into researching omega-3 fatty acids; however, there are considerable variations in the methodologies employed. Many studies add oils to animal feed and under ambient conditions omega-3 fatty acids are particularly unstable and prone to autoxidation and peroxidative damage. It is therefore important to take specific precautions with the stock preparations and when preparing the experimental diets. There is a need for clarity in the reporting of methodologies employed, such as how oil preparations are stored and handled, how experimental diets are prepared, the potential effects of adding additional antioxidants, whether there is a clear rationale for the selection of control/placebo diets, which may be situation dependent, and consistency in expressing the experimental doses. The purpose of this article is to highlight some of these issues in the hope of promoting discussion, and potentially developing guidelines as to what represents best practice.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)281-5
Number of pages5
JournalProstaglandins, leukotrienes, and essential fatty acids
Issue number5
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 16 Sept 2011


  • Animals
  • Biomedical Research
  • Fatty Acids, Omega-3
  • Guidelines as Topic
  • Humans
  • Oxidation-Reduction
  • Journal Article
  • Review

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