Document Detail

The role of essential fatty acids in development.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  16011478     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
The presence of docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) and arachidonic acid (ARA) in human milk but not in infant formula, coupled with lower plasma and brain lipid contents of DHA in formula-fed than in breast-fed infants and reports of higher IQ in individuals who were breast-fed versus formula-fed as infants, suggest that exogenous DHA (and ARA) may be essential for optimal development. Thus, since 1990, several studies have examined the impact of formulas containing DHA or DHA plus ARA on visual function and neurodevelopmental outcome. Some of these studies have shown benefits but others have not. These results leave largely unanswered the question of whether these fatty acids are beneficial for either the term or preterm infant. However, evidence that preterm infants might benefit is somewhat more convincing than that for term infants. Despite the limited evidence for efficacy, formulas supplemented with DHA and ARA are now available and appear to be safe.
William C Heird; Alexandre Lapillonne
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Review    
Journal Detail:
Title:  Annual review of nutrition     Volume:  25     ISSN:  0199-9885     ISO Abbreviation:  Annu. Rev. Nutr.     Publication Date:  2005  
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2005-07-13     Completed Date:  2005-09-29     Revised Date:  2008-11-21    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  8209988     Medline TA:  Annu Rev Nutr     Country:  United States    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  549-71     Citation Subset:  IM    
Children's Nutrition Research Center, Department of Pediatrics, Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, Texas 77030-2600, USA.
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MeSH Terms
Arachidonic Acid / physiology
Brain / physiology
Child, Preschool
Docosahexaenoic Acids
Fatty Acids, Essential / physiology*
Fatty Acids, Unsaturated / pharmacology,  physiology
Growth / physiology*
Infant Nutritional Physiological Phenomena
Infant, Newborn
Milk, Human / chemistry
Vision, Ocular
Reg. No./Substance:
0/Fatty Acids, Essential; 0/Fatty Acids, Unsaturated; 25167-62-8/Docosahexaenoic Acids; 506-32-1/Arachidonic Acid

From MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine

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