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Comparative Study
. 2010 Jun 29;11:136.
doi: 10.1186/1471-2474-11-136.

Supplementation of Diet With Krill Oil Protects Against Experimental Rheumatoid Arthritis

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Free PMC article
Comparative Study

Supplementation of Diet With Krill Oil Protects Against Experimental Rheumatoid Arthritis

Michelle Ierna et al. BMC Musculoskelet Disord. .
Free PMC article

Abstract

Background: Although the efficacy of standard fish oil has been the subject of research in arthritis, the effect of krill oil in this disease has yet to be investigated. The objective of the present study was to evaluate a standardised preparation of krill oil and fish oil in an animal model for arthritis.

Methods: Collagen-induced arthritis susceptible DBA/1 mice were provided ad libitum access to a control diet or diets supplemented with either krill oil or fish oil throughout the study. There were 14 mice in each of the 3 treatment groups. The level of EPA + DHA was 0.44 g/100 g in the krill oil diet and 0.47 g/100 g in the fish oil diet. Severity of arthritis was determined using a clinical scoring system. Arthritis joints were analysed by histopathology and graded. Serum samples were obtained at the end of the study and the levels of IL-1alpha, IL-1beta, IL-7, IL-10, IL-12p70, IL-13, IL-15, IL-17 and TGF-beta were determined by a Luminex assay system.

Results: Consumption of krill oil and supplemented diet significantly reduced the arthritis scores and hind paw swelling when compared to a control diet not supplemented with EPA and DHA. However, the arthritis score during the late phase of the study was only significantly reduced after krill oil administration. Furthermore, mice fed the krill oil diet demonstrated lower infiltration of inflammatory cells into the joint and synovial layer hyperplasia, when compared to control. Inclusion of fish oil and krill oil in the diets led to a significant reduction in hyperplasia and total histology score. Krill oil did not modulate the levels of serum cytokines whereas consumption of fish oil increased the levels of IL-1alpha and IL-13.

Conclusions: The study suggests that krill oil may be a useful intervention strategy against the clinical and histopathological signs of inflammatory arthritis.

Figures

Figure 1
Figure 1
Krill oil and fish oil reduce clinical arthritis signs in mice. A) Clinical arthritis scores in DBA/1 mice following induction of collagen induced arthritis with collagen boost on study day 47. B) Hind paw thickness (mm) measurements in DBA/1 mice following induction of collagen induced arthritis on study day 47. Data represents mean values ± SEM (n = 13-14). For mice that were culled due to arthritis severity, the values for the last measurement of clinical arthritis scores and hind paw thickness were used for calculations throughout the rest of the study. * Significantly different from control group (P < 0.05).
Figure 2
Figure 2
Krill oil and fish oil reduce histopathology associated with arthritis in mice. Histopathology scores in sections taken from knee joints of arthritis induced DBA/1 mice on termination of the study. Sections were scored for cell infiltrations (A), synovial hyperplasia (B), bone/cartilage erosion (C) and total histology score (D). Data represents mean values ± SEM (n = 13-14). * Significantly different from control group (P < 0.05).
Figure 3
Figure 3
Effect of krill oil and fish oil on body weight changes in mice. Mean body weights of DBA/1 mice following induction of collagen induced arthritis with collagen boost on study day 47. Data represents mean values of living mice ± SEM. * Significantly different from control group (P < 0.05).
Figure 4
Figure 4
Effect of krill oil and fish oil on serum cytokine levels. Level of IL-1α (A), IL-1β (B) and IL-13 (C) detected in the serum from CIA mice on termination of the study. Data represents mean values ± SEM (n = 6-11). * Significantly different from control group (P < 0.05).

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