Effects of Omega-3 Fatty Acids on Markers of Inflammation in Patients With Chronic Kidney Disease: A Controversial Issue

Chun Hu, Ming Yang, Xuejing Zhu, Peng Gao, Shikun Yang, Yachun Han, Xianghui Chen, Li Xiao, Shuguang Yuan, Fuyou Liu, Yashpal S. Kanwar, Lin Sun*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

8 Scopus citations


Chronic kidney disease (CKD) is a global problem which contributes to a significant morbidity and mortality in China. Concomitant inflammatory state further boosts the mortality due to cardiovascular events in patients with CKD undergoing dialysis. There is a general notion that Omega-3 fatty acids including docosahexaenoic acids (DHA) and eicosapentaenoic (EPA) have certain health benefits perhaps via the regulation of inflammation. However, the anti-inflammatory effect of omega-3 fatty acids in patients with CKD is controversial. We analyzed the data of oral supplementation of omega-3 fatty acids in CKD patients by searching literature on database from inception to August 2016. The analysis included randomized controlled trials (RCTs) derived from multiple databases, and the effect of omega-3 fatty acids supplementation versus the control cohorts were compared. All of the data analysis was calculated by RevMan 5.2. A total of 12 RCTs involving 487 patients were included in the meta-analysis. Among them 254 patients received omega-3 fatty acids and 233 patients served as controls who received placebo. The meta-analysis revealed no statistical significance in serum levels of C-reactive protein (CRP) (SMD, −0.20; 95% CI, −0.44 to 0.05; P = 0.11), IL-6 (SMD, 0.00; 95% CI, −0.33 to 0.33; P = 0.99) and TNF-α (SMD, 0.14; 95% CI, −0.17 to 0.44; P = 0.38) between the omega-3 fatty acids supplementation group and control. This suggested that there is insufficient evidence to conclude the benefit of omega-3 fatty acids oral supplementation in reducing serum levels of CRP, IL-6 and TNF-α in patients with CKD.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)124-132
Number of pages9
JournalTherapeutic Apheresis and Dialysis
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 2018


  • C-reactive protein
  • Chronic kidney disease
  • Dialysis
  • Interleukin-6
  • Omega-3 fatty acids
  • Tumor necrosis factor-α

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Hematology
  • Nephrology

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