Amelioration of diabesity-induced colorectal ontogenesis by omega-3 fatty acids in mice

Anna Algamas-Dimantov, Dana Davidovsky, Julius Ben-Ari, Jing X. Kang, Irena Peri, Rachel Hertz, Jacob Bar-Tana, Betty Schwartz*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


Postnatal intestinal ontogenesis in an animal model of diabesity may recapitulate morphological and transduction features of diabesity-induced intestinal dysplasia and its amelioration by endogenous (n-3) polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA). Proliferation, differentiation, and transduction aspects of intestinal ontogenesis have been studied here in obese, insulin-resistant db/db mice, in fat-1 transgene coding for desaturation of (n-6) PUFA into (n-3) PUFA, in db/db crossed with fat-1 mice, and in control mice. Diabesity resulted in increased colonic proliferation and dedifferentiation of epithelial colonocytes and goblet cells, with increased colonic β-catenin and hepatocyte nuclear factor (HNF)-4α transcriptional activities accompanied by enrichment in HNF-4α-bound (n-6) PUFA. In contrast, in fat-1 mice, colonic proliferation was restrained, accompanied by differentiation of crypt stem cells into epithelial colonocytes and goblet cells and by decrease in colonic β-catenin and HNF-4α transcriptional activities, with concomitant enrichment in HNF-4α-bound (n-3) PUFA at the expense of (n-6) PUFA. Colonic proliferation and differentiation, the profile of β-catenin and HNF-4α-responsive genes, and the composition of HNF-4α-bound PUFA of db/db mice reverted to wild-type by introducing the fat-1 gene into the db/db context. Suppression of intestinal HNF-4αactivity by (n-3) PUFA may ameliorate diabesity-induced intestinal ontogenesis and offer an effective preventive modality for colorectal cancer.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)1056-1070
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of Lipid Research
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 2012


  • Colorectal neoplasia
  • Diabetes
  • Epithelial cell differentiation
  • Epithelial cell growth
  • Obesity


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