Low levels of linoleic acid in plasma total lipids of HIV-1 seropositive children

Carlo Agostoni, Gian Vincenzo Zuccotti, Enrica Riva, Silvia Decarlis, Luca Bernardo, Maria G. Bruzzese, Marcello Giovannini

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objective: To assess the plasma fatty acid status of a group of well- nourished children with the human immunodeficiency virus type-1 (HIV-1) and how this relates to the blood total CD4+ lymphocyte count. Subjects: Fourteen HIV-1 seropositive children at various stages of disease and with adequate growth indices woe assessed and compared to a control group of 30 healthy children. Results: The concentrations (mg/dL) of plasma total fatty acids were not different between the two groups. HIV-1 seropositive children presented lower levels of 18-C essential polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA: linoleic acid, LA, and alpha-linolenic acid) and higher levels of their 20-C long-chain derivatives (di-homo-γ-linolenic acid, arachidonic acid, AA, and eicosapentaenoic acid) and docosahexaenoic acid in their plasma total lipids. The lowest plasma LA levels were observed in the subgroup of patients with more advanced stages of disease. In bivariate analyses the plasma LA levels related positively (Spearman r=0.50, p=0.06), while the LA/AA ratio related negatively (Spearman r=-0.51, p=0.06), to the total CD4+ count. Conclusions: Childhood HIV-1 infection is associated with changes in plasma fatty acid profile suggestive of an increased PUFA turnover. Decreased levels of LA (together with higher plasma AA levels) appear to be associated with more advanced clinical and biochemical stages of disease.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)25-29
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of the American College of Nutrition
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1998


  • HIV-1 childhood infection
  • Linoleic acid
  • Polyunsaturated fatty acids

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Food Science


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