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Comparison of the fatty acid component in structural lipids from dolphins, zebra and giraffe: possible evolutionary implications

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Abstract

Essential fatty acid compositional data on the structural lipids of mammals which predominantly eat n-3 fatty acids suggests preferential incorporation of n-6 essential fatty acids.

The structural lipids of liver, muscle and brain of five species of dolphin (Tursiops truncatus, Stenella allenuata, Steno bredanesis, Delphinus delphis and Lagenorhynchus obliquidens), obtained from the wild, contained substantial amounts of arachidonic acid and other n-6 long chain derivatives of linoleic acid. The n-6 to n-3 ratio was approximately 1:1.

Data for two species of leaf-eating land mammals, the zebra, Equus burchelli Gray and giraffe, Giraffa camelopardalis L., indicate that tissue phosphoglycerides were dominated by n-6 fatty acids.

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