Arterial thrombosis is the underlying cause for a number of cardiovascular-related events. Although dietary supplementation that includes polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) has been proposed to elicit cardiovascular protection, a mechanism for antithrombotic protection has not been well established. The current study sought to investigate whether an omega-6 essential fatty acid, docosapentaenoic acid (DPAn-6), and its oxidized lipid metabolites (oxylipins) provide direct cardiovascular protection through inhibition of platelet reactivity. Human and mouse blood and isolated platelets were treated with DPAn-6 and its 12-lipoxygenase (12-LOX)-derived oxylipins, 11-hydroxy-docosapentaenoic acid and 14-hydroxy-docosapentaenoic acid, to assess their ability to inhibit platelet activation. Pharmacological and genetic approaches were used to elucidate a role for DPA and its oxylipins in preventing platelet activation. DPAn-6 was found to be significantly increased in platelets following fatty acid supplementation, and it potently inhibited platelet activation through its 12-LOX-derived oxylipins. The inhibitory effects were selectively reversed through inhibition of the nuclear receptor peroxisome proliferator activator receptor-a (PPARa). PPARa binding was confirmed using a PPARa transcription reporter assay, as well as PPARa2/2 mice. These approaches confirmed that selectivity of platelet inhibition was due to effects of DPA oxylipins acting through PPARa. Mice administered DPAn-6 or its oxylipins exhibited reduced thrombus formation following vessel injury, which was prevented in PPARa2/2 mice. Hence, the current study demonstrates that DPAn-6 and its oxylipins potently and effectively inhibit platelet activation and thrombosis following a vascular injury. Platelet function is regulated, in part, through an oxylipin-induced PPARa-dependent manner, suggesting that targeting PPARa may represent an alternative strategy to treat thrombotic-related diseases.
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