Enhanced prostaglandin F2α formation in human pregnancy and the effect of increased oily fish intake: results from the Salmon in Pregnancy Study

Prostaglandins Leukot Essent Fatty Acids. Jan-Feb 2012;86(1-2):35-8. doi: 10.1016/j.plefa.2011.10.008. Epub 2011 Nov 1.


Oily fish intake during pregnancy may reduce the risk of allergic diseases in infancy possibly by shifts in the fatty acid balance and subsequent altered prostaglandin (PG) formation. This intervention is the first study to evaluate if increased oily fish intake affects in vivo PGF(2α) formation during pregnancy. British pregnant women were randomised to two portions of farmed salmon weekly (n=47), or maintenance of their normal diet low in fish (n=41), from pregnancy week 20 until parturition. The concentrations of eicosapentaenoic and docosahexaenoic acids in plasma phosphatidylcholine (PC) were higher and the concentration of arachidonic acid in plasma PC was lower in the salmon group than the control group at weeks 34 and 38 of pregnancy. PGF(2α) formation was evaluated by urinary measurement of 15-keto-dihydro-PGF(2α), a major PGF(2α) metabolite, at 20, 34 and 38 weeks. In both the salmon and control groups urinary 15-keto-dihydro-PGF(2α) concentrations increased significantly during pregnancy, which may be of physiological importance. Oily fish intervention altered fatty acid concentrations but did not affect urinary 15-keto-dihydro-PGF(2α) concentrations in pregnant women.

Trial registration: ClinicalTrials.gov NCT00801502.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Analysis of Variance
  • Animals
  • Arachidonic Acid / blood
  • Diet*
  • Dinoprost / analogs & derivatives
  • Dinoprost / urine*
  • Docosahexaenoic Acids / blood
  • Eicosapentaenoic Acid / blood
  • Female
  • Gestational Age
  • Humans
  • Phosphatidylcholines / blood
  • Pregnancy
  • Salmon*
  • Seafood*
  • Time Factors


  • Phosphatidylcholines
  • Docosahexaenoic Acids
  • 15-keto-13,14-dihydroprostaglandin F2alpha
  • Arachidonic Acid
  • Eicosapentaenoic Acid
  • Dinoprost

Associated data

  • ClinicalTrials.gov/NCT00801502