The resolution code of acute inflammation: Novel pro-resolving lipid mediators in resolution

Semin Immunol. 2015 May;27(3):200-15. doi: 10.1016/j.smim.2015.03.004. Epub 2015 Apr 7.


Studies into the mechanisms in resolution of self-limited inflammation and acute reperfusion injury have uncovered a new genus of pro-resolving lipid mediators coined specialized pro-resolving mediators (SPM) including lipoxins, resolvins, protectins and maresins that are each temporally produced by resolving-exudates with distinct actions for return to homeostasis. SPM evoke potent anti-inflammatory and novel pro-resolving mechanisms as well as enhance microbial clearance. While born in inflammation-resolution, SPM are conserved structures with functions discovered in microbial defense, pain, organ protection and tissue regeneration, wound healing, cancer, reproduction, and neurobiology-cognition. This review covers these SPM mechanisms and other new omega-3 PUFA pathways that open their path for functions in resolution physiology.

Keywords: Essential fatty acids; Host defense; Infection; Inflammation; Lipid mediator.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Acute Disease
  • Animals
  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents, Non-Steroidal / therapeutic use
  • Aspirin / therapeutic use
  • Docosahexaenoic Acids / metabolism
  • Fatty Acids, Essential / metabolism
  • Fatty Acids, Omega-3 / metabolism*
  • Homeostasis / immunology
  • Humans
  • Inflammation / drug therapy
  • Inflammation / immunology*
  • Inflammation Mediators / immunology*
  • Lipid Metabolism / immunology*
  • Lipoxins / metabolism
  • Mice
  • Reperfusion Injury / immunology
  • Reperfusion Injury / pathology
  • Wound Healing / physiology*


  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents, Non-Steroidal
  • Fatty Acids, Essential
  • Fatty Acids, Omega-3
  • Inflammation Mediators
  • Lipoxins
  • Docosahexaenoic Acids
  • Aspirin