Background: Atherosclerosis-induced coronary heart disease - caused by elevated levels of low-density lipoproteins (LDL) and inflammation - is one of the most prevalent diseases. Monounsaturated fatty acids are reported to prevent atherosclerosis; emu oil is a rich source of monounsaturated fatty acid, and we hypothesize that emu oil supplementation could lower inflammation and prevent atherosclerosis in diet-induced obese (DIO) animals. Male Wistar rats were randomly divided into five groups (n = 6), and fed with normal diet (chow pellet; ND), or with cafeteria diet (CD), or with CD along with emu oil supplementation at three different doses: ED1 (2 mL), ED2 (4 mL) and ED3 (8 mL) kg(-1) body weight (BW), respectively.
Results: After 12 weeks, the animals were sacrificed and serum was analysed for measuring lipid profile, C-reactive proteins, testosterone and luteinizing hormone. Histopathological studies were performed to observe atherogenic changes in thoracic aorta. Restoration of altered lipid and hormonal profiles, and inhibition of atherogenic changes in thoracic aorta, were observed with supplementation of emu oil, confirming its anti-atherosclerotic activity.
Conclusion: The high content of oleic acid in emu oil could have orchestrated - either solely or in combination with linoleic and linolenic acids - causing the upregulation of testosterone biosynthesis and inhibition of atheromatous plaque formation in diet-induced obese animals. © 2015 Society of Chemical Industry.
Keywords: C-reactive proteins (CRP); atherosclerosis; diet-induced obesity (DIO); emu oil; oleic acid; testosterone.
© 2015 Society of Chemical Industry.