The pharmacokinetic parameters of y-linolenic acid and its metabolic products were studied in six healthy volunteers (three males, three females) following the administration of OEP. Serum level-time courses of eight fatty acids (y-linolenic, palmitic, linoleic, linolenic, oleic stearic, arachidonic, dihomo-y-linolenic acids) were profiled twice over a 24-hour period after receiving six capsules of Epogam (total dose being 240 mg of y-linolenic acid) at 7:00 am and 7:00 pm (y-linolenic acid total daily dose being 480 mg). The following mean pharmacokinetic parameters were obtained for y-lino-lenic acid: tmaxam (hour) = 4.4 (significantly higher than tmaxpm [p < 0.05]); Cmaxam (M-g/mL) = 22.6; tmaxpm (hour) = 2.7; Cnicapm (|lg/mL) = 20.7; area under the curve (AUC)12ham ([|g • hour]/mL) = 119.0; AUC12hpm ([mg • hour]/ mL) = 155.1; and AUC24h ([mg • hour]/mL) = 274.1 (significantly higher than AUC24h at baseline). This study found that the absorption of y-linolenic acid from the gastrointestinal tract is much lower than in the morning than in the evening. The concentrations of the metabolites of y-linolenic acid, arachidonic acid, and dihomo-y-linolenic acid could not be established in these volunteers (51).

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