Altered IFN-γ Levels after Treatment of Epileptic Patients with Omega-3 Fatty Acids
Epilepsy is a frequent chronic disorder of the brain characterized by intermittent epileptic seizures caused by hypersynchronous discharge of neurons in the brain. Studies have reported the role of cytokines in the pathogenesis of epilepsy, and a number of investigations have shown decreased levels of omega-3 fatty acids in epileptic patients. We investigated differences in serum levels of two cytokines, transforming growth factor (TGF)-β and interferon (IFN)-γ, in 40 epileptic cases prior to and after treatment with omega-3 fatty acids. IFN-γ levels were significantly increased after the 16-week treatment period (P < 0.001). However, TGF-β levels remained unchanged (P = 0.14). Omega-3 fatty acid treatment may alter the immune response in epileptic patients. This should be considered in prescription of omega-3 fatty acid supplements in these patients. Future studies with larger sample sizes should verify the results of the current study.
Keywords: Epilepsy; IFN-γ; Omega-3 fatty acid; TGF-β.