Moose and Caribou as Novel Sources of Functional Lipids: Fatty Acid Esters of Hydroxy Fatty Acids, Diglycerides and Monoacetyldiglycerides

Molecules. 2019 Jan 10;24(2):232. doi: 10.3390/molecules24020232.


Fatty acid esters of hydroxy fatty acids (FAHFA), diglycerides (DG) and monoacetyldiglycerides (MAcDG) are gaining interest as functional lipids in pharmaceuticals and functional food formulations for managing and treating metabolic or inflammatory diseases. Herein, we investigated whether the antler and/or meat of two Cervids (moose and caribou) are novel sources of FAHFA, DG and MAcDG. We observed FAHFA present in moose and caribou composed mainly of polyunsaturated families, and that the esterification occurred frequently at the C5-hydroxy fatty acid moiety, most noticeably arachidonic acid 5-hydroxyeicosatrienoic acid (ARA-5-HERA). Moose antler, caribou and moose meat also contained significant levels of both 1,2-DG and 1,3-DG lipids. The 1,3-DG molecular species consisted mainly of 16:0/18:1, 18:0/16:0, and 18:0/18:1. On the other hand, major 1,2-DG species consisted of DG 18:0/18:0, 16:0/16:0 and 18:1/18:1 molecular species with higher levels in the antler compared to the meat. The molecular species composition of MAcDG was very simple and consisted of 14:2/18:2/2:0, 16:0/18:2/2:0, 16:0/18:1/2:0 and 18:0/18:1/2:0 with the first species 14:2/18:2/2:0 predominating in the tip of moose antlers. Increasing access to and knowledge of the presence of these functional lipids in foods will enhance their intake in the diet with potential implications in improving personal and population health.

Keywords: diglycerides; fatty acid esters of hydroxy fatty acids; functional foods; functional lipids; monoacetyldiglycerides; regioisomers.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antlers / chemistry*
  • Deer
  • Diglycerides
  • Drug Industry
  • Esters / isolation & purification*
  • Fatty Acids
  • Functional Food
  • Lipids / analysis*
  • Meat / analysis*


  • Diglycerides
  • Esters
  • Fatty Acids
  • Lipids