Effects of prenatal fish-oil and 5-methyltetrahydrofolate supplementation on cognitive development of children at 6.5 y of age

Cristina Campoy, María V. Escolano-Margarit, Rosa Ramos, Montserrat Parrilla-Roure, Györgyi Csábi, Jeannette Beyer, María C. Ramirez-Tortosa, Anne M. Molloy, T. Decsi, Berthold V. Koletzko

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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Abstract

Background: The influence of prenatal long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids (LC-PUFAs) and folate on neurologic development remains controversial. Objective: The objective was to assess the long-term effects of n-3 (omega-3) LC-PUFA supplementation, 5-methyltetrahydrofolate (5-MTHF) supplementation, or both in pregnant women on cognitive development of offspring at 6.5 y of age. Design: This was a follow-up study of the NUHEAL (Nutraceuticals for a Healthier Life) cohort. Healthy pregnant women in 3 European centers were randomly assigned to 4 intervention groups. From the 20th week of pregnancy until delivery, they received a daily supplement of 500 mg docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) + 150 mg eicosapentaenoic acid [fish oil (FO)], 400 μg 5-MTHF, or both or a placebo. Infants received formula containing 0.5% DHA and 0.4% arachidonic acid (AA) if they were born to mothers receiving FO supplements or were virtually free of DHA and AA until the age of 6 mo if they belonged to the groups that were not supplemented with FO. Fatty acids and folate concentrations were determined in maternal blood at weeks 20 and 30 of pregnancy, at delivery, and in cord blood. Cognitive function was assessed at 6.5 y of age with the Kaufman Assessment Battery for Children (K-ABC). Results: We observed no significant differences in K-ABC scores between intervention groups. Higher DHA in maternal erythrocytes at delivery was associated with a Mental Processing Composite Score higher than the 50th percentile in the offspring. Conclusion: We observed no significant effect of supplementation on the cognitive function of children, but maternal DHA status may be related to later cognitive function in children. This trial was registered at clinicaltrials.gov as NCT01180933.

Original languageEnglish
JournalAmerican Journal of Clinical Nutrition
Volume94
Issue number6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Dec 1 2011

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Docosahexaenoic Acids
Fish Oils
Child Development
Mothers
Cognition
Unsaturated Fatty Acids
Folic Acid
Arachidonic Acid
Pregnant Women
Pregnancy
Infant Formula
Eicosapentaenoic Acid
Dietary Supplements
Fetal Blood
Nervous System
Fatty Acids
Erythrocytes
Placebos
5-methyltetrahydrofolate

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Nutrition and Dietetics

Cite this

Effects of prenatal fish-oil and 5-methyltetrahydrofolate supplementation on cognitive development of children at 6.5 y of age. / Campoy, Cristina; Escolano-Margarit, María V.; Ramos, Rosa; Parrilla-Roure, Montserrat; Csábi, Györgyi; Beyer, Jeannette; Ramirez-Tortosa, María C.; Molloy, Anne M.; Decsi, T.; Koletzko, Berthold V.

In: American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, Vol. 94, No. 6, 01.12.2011.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Campoy, C, Escolano-Margarit, MV, Ramos, R, Parrilla-Roure, M, Csábi, G, Beyer, J, Ramirez-Tortosa, MC, Molloy, AM, Decsi, T & Koletzko, BV 2011, 'Effects of prenatal fish-oil and 5-methyltetrahydrofolate supplementation on cognitive development of children at 6.5 y of age', American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, vol. 94, no. 6. https://doi.org/10.3945/ajcn.110.001107
Campoy, Cristina ; Escolano-Margarit, María V. ; Ramos, Rosa ; Parrilla-Roure, Montserrat ; Csábi, Györgyi ; Beyer, Jeannette ; Ramirez-Tortosa, María C. ; Molloy, Anne M. ; Decsi, T. ; Koletzko, Berthold V. / Effects of prenatal fish-oil and 5-methyltetrahydrofolate supplementation on cognitive development of children at 6.5 y of age. In: American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. 2011 ; Vol. 94, No. 6.
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abstract = "Background: The influence of prenatal long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids (LC-PUFAs) and folate on neurologic development remains controversial. Objective: The objective was to assess the long-term effects of n-3 (omega-3) LC-PUFA supplementation, 5-methyltetrahydrofolate (5-MTHF) supplementation, or both in pregnant women on cognitive development of offspring at 6.5 y of age. Design: This was a follow-up study of the NUHEAL (Nutraceuticals for a Healthier Life) cohort. Healthy pregnant women in 3 European centers were randomly assigned to 4 intervention groups. From the 20th week of pregnancy until delivery, they received a daily supplement of 500 mg docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) + 150 mg eicosapentaenoic acid [fish oil (FO)], 400 μg 5-MTHF, or both or a placebo. Infants received formula containing 0.5{\%} DHA and 0.4{\%} arachidonic acid (AA) if they were born to mothers receiving FO supplements or were virtually free of DHA and AA until the age of 6 mo if they belonged to the groups that were not supplemented with FO. Fatty acids and folate concentrations were determined in maternal blood at weeks 20 and 30 of pregnancy, at delivery, and in cord blood. Cognitive function was assessed at 6.5 y of age with the Kaufman Assessment Battery for Children (K-ABC). Results: We observed no significant differences in K-ABC scores between intervention groups. Higher DHA in maternal erythrocytes at delivery was associated with a Mental Processing Composite Score higher than the 50th percentile in the offspring. Conclusion: We observed no significant effect of supplementation on the cognitive function of children, but maternal DHA status may be related to later cognitive function in children. This trial was registered at clinicaltrials.gov as NCT01180933.",
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