Prepared Foods December 12, 2005 e-newsletter

"Conjugated fatty acids (CFAs) are a mix of positional and geometric isomers of polyunsaturated fatty acids with conjugated double bonds. Reports indicate that CFAs have potent beneficial effects, including antitumor, antiobese, antiatherogenic and antidiabetic activities," scientists in Japan report in their review.

K. Nagao and T. Yanagita from Saga University explained, "The molecules have also been shown to prevent the onset of hypertension. Recent reports suggest that each CFA isomer has different functions, for example the 10trans, 12cis isomer of conjugated linoleic acid (CLA) has anticarcinogenic, antiobese and antidiabetic effects, whereas the 9cis, 11trans-CLA isomer exerts an anticancer effect.

"Although it would be interesting to know the effects of CFAs on humans, there are only few reports concerning the anticancer and antiobese effects of CLA in humans."

The authors concluded, "More detailed evaluations of the physiological bioactivities of CFA isomers on lifestyle-related diseases in humans and animals will be of great interest in future studies."

Nagao and Yanagita published their review in the Journal of Bioscience and Bioengineering (“Conjugated Fatty Acids in Food and Their Health Benefits.” J BIOSCI BIOENG, 2005;100(2):152-157).

For more information, contact T. Yanagita, Saga University, Dept. Applied Biology Science, Laboratory Nutrition Biochemistry, 1 Hongo, Saga 8408502, Japan.

Source: Obesity, Fitness & Wellness Week