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Fatty Acids Profile
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    Fatty Acids Profile

    Product Code: LEFA

    Price: $242.00

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    Test Description

    Fatty Acids Profile

    Specimen is 1.0 mL of washed (EDTA) RBC's

    Red blood cells are preferred over plasma or serum. RBCs have a long life and RBC membrane fatty acids are said to correspond closely with the fatty acids found in brain cells. Two fatty acids that the body cannot make are omega-6 polyunsaturated fatty acid, linoleic acid (LA), and the omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acid, alpha linolenic acid (ALA). The ratio of the omega-6 to omega-3 fatty acids in prehistoric times was about 11. By the year 1900, the ratio was around 41. Today, due to fast foods and the use of vegetable oils in cooking, the ratio is over 201. A good ratio would be about 1.2 to 4.5.

    Both LA and ALA are transformed into long chain polyunsaturated fatty acids which are 20 carbons or more in length. The 20-chain FA form eicosanoids which form prostaglandins or thromboxanes (via the cycloxygenase enzyme) or leukotrienes (via the lipoxygenase enzyme). If an imbalance occurs, excess prostaglandin E2, an inflammatory promoting compound, may be formed.

    Some conditions associated with fatty acid imbalance are arthritis, skin problems, allergies, IBS, some autoimmune diseases, ADHD, depression, senile dementia, and aggressive behavior. An imbalance may also be seen in lactating or pregnant women.

    Profile Includes Omega-6 fatty acid family (linoleic, gamma linolenic, dihomogammalinolenic, arachidonic, total omega-6); Omega-3 fatty acid family (alpha linolenic, eicosapentaenoic, docosahexaenoic, total omega-3 omega-6 to omega-3 balance); Monounsaturated fatty acids (oleic, nervonic, total monounsaturated); Saturated fatty acid family (palmitic, stearic, total saturated); Unsaturated to Saturated Ratio.

    Test Details

    Process time: 7 to 10 business days

    Process method: The methodology is by gas chromatography.

    CPT code: 82725 (x11)

    Special instructions: None

    Rejection causes: Gross Hemolysis

    Collection Instructions

    Patient prep: None

    Specimen volume: 1 mL EDTA RBC, washed 1x

    Minimum volume: 0.4 mL

    Collection container: EDTA tube

    Transport container: Plastic transport tube

    Transport instructions: Freeze

    Collection instructions: Click here for PDF


    Normal values:

    The accepted normal ranges established in our laboratory for RBC fatty acids are:

    Omega-6 Linoleic acid (LA) 90.0 to 182.0 uM/L Essential fatty acid
    Gamma linolenic (GLA) 0.7 to 3.5 uM/L Eicosanoid precursor
    Dihomogammalinolenic acid (DGLA) 11.0 to 31.0 uM/L Eicosanoid substrate
    Arachidonic acid 90.0 to 250.0 uM/L Eicosanoid substrate
    Total Omega-6 191.7 to 466.5 uM/L

    Omega-3 Alpha linolenic acid (ALA) 0.5 to 2.9 uM/L Essential fatty acid
    Eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) 4.0 to 20.0 uM/L Eicosanoid substrate
    Docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) 14.0 to 90.0 uM/L Neurological development
    Total Omega-3 18.5 to 112.9 uM/L
    Arachidonic acid to EPA ratio 5.0 to 13.0 uM/L

    Monounsaturated fatty acids Oleic acid (OA) 120.0 to 260.0 uM/L Membrane fluidity

    Total monounsaturated fatty acids 330 to 839 uM/L

    Saturated fatty acids Palmitic acid 210.0 to 370.0 uM/L Highly cholesterogenic
    Stearic acid 215.0 to 375.0 uM/L Elevated triglycerides

    Total Saturated fatty acids 425.0 to 745.0 uM/L

    Unsaturated to saturated fatty acid ratio 0.78 to 1.13

    Trans fatty acids Elaitic(C-18) 2.0 to 10.0 uM/L


    Reference one: Nigel Plummer, Gastrointestinal Health, Essential Fatty Acids & Their Impact on the Immune System, Seroyal Workshop.

    Reference two: Bralley, A., Lord, R. Laboratory Evaluations in Molecular Medicine: Nutrients, Toxicants, and Cell Regulators, IAMM, Norcross, GA., 2001: pp 134-173.

    Reference three: Erasmus, U. Fats that Heal, Fats that Kill, 1986, Alive Books, Burnaby, BC Canada.

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