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Icosapent ethyl, a pure EPA omega-3 fatty acid: effects on plasma and red blood cell fatty acids in patients with very high triglyceride levels (results from the MARINE study).

Author(s): Braeckman RA(1), Manku MS, Bays HE, Stirtan WG, Soni PN.

Affiliation(s): Author information: (1)Amarin Pharma Inc., Bedminster, NJ 07921, USA. Electronic address: RMan@oopla.net.

Publication date & source: 2013, Prostaglandins Leukot Essent Fatty Acids. , 89(4):195-201

INTRODUCTION: Icosapent ethyl (IPE) is a high-purity prescription form of eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) ethyl ester. We evaluated IPE's effects on plasma and red blood cell (RBC) fatty acids (FA) and the relationship to triglyceride (TG) lowering. MATERIALS AND METHODS: This was a predefined, exploratory analysis (N=229) of FA plasma concentration and RBC membrane content from the double-blind, placebo-controlled MARINE study. RESULTS: Mean placebo-adjusted plasma EPA levels increased from baseline by 792% and 402% and the arachidonic acid/EPA plasma ratio decreased from baseline by 99% and 88% with IPE 4 g/day and 2 g/day, respectively (all P<.0001). Overall, the fractional pool of omega-3 FAs increased; there was a decrease or no change for omega-6 FAs. The increase in EPA levels with increased IPE dose corresponded with the TG-lowering effect. Similar FA shifts were observed in RBCs. CONCLUSIONS: IPE significantly increased plasma and RBC FAs, which correlated to TG lowering.

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