Objective: Dietary supplementation with polyunsaturated fatty acids has been widely used for primary and secondary prevention of cardiovascular disease in individuals at risk; however, the cardioprotective benefits of polyunsaturated fatty acids remain controversial because of lack of mechanistic and in vivo evidence. We present direct evidence that an omega-6 polyunsaturated fatty acid, dihomo-γ-linolenic acid (DGLA), exhibits in vivo cardioprotection through 12-lipoxygenase (12-LOX) oxidation of DGLA to its reduced oxidized lipid form, 12(S)-hydroxy-8Z,10E,14Z-eicosatrienoic acid (12(S)-HETrE), inhibiting platelet activation and thrombosis.
Approach and results: DGLA inhibited ex vivo platelet aggregation and Rap1 activation in wild-type mice, but not in mice lacking 12-LOX expression (12-LOX(-/-)). Similarly, wild-type mice treated with DGLA were able to reduce thrombus growth (platelet and fibrin accumulation) after laser-induced injury of the arteriole of the cremaster muscle, but not 12-LOX(-/-) mice, supporting a 12-LOX requirement for mediating the inhibitory effects of DGLA on platelet-mediated thrombus formation. Platelet activation and thrombus formation were also suppressed when directly treated with 12(S)-HETrE. Importantly, 2 hemostatic models, tail bleeding and arteriole rupture of the cremaster muscle, showed no alteration in hemostasis after 12(S)-HETrE treatment. Finally, the mechanism for 12(S)-HETrE protection was shown to be mediated via a Gαs-linked G-protein-coupled receptor pathway in human platelets.
Conclusions: This study provides the direct evidence that an omega-6 polyunsaturated fatty acid, DGLA, inhibits injury-induced thrombosis through its 12-LOX oxylipin, 12(S)-HETrE, which strongly supports the potential cardioprotective benefits of DGLA supplementation through its regulation of platelet function. Furthermore, this is the first evidence of a 12-LOX oxylipin regulating platelet function in a Gs α subunit-linked G-protein-coupled receptor-dependent manner.
Keywords: blood platelets; eicosanoids; fibrin; lipoxygenase; platelet activation; thrombosis.
© 2016 American Heart Association, Inc.