Using omega-3 fatty acids in anti-tumor medications may improve treatment response and quality of life for cancer patients, says a new study.
The study by University Hospitals of Leicester in Britain examined 50 patients with advanced pancreatic cancer.
Patients were given 1,000 mg of omega-3 fatty acids weekly followed by up to 100 g of omega-3 rich lipid emulsion for three weeks which was followed by a week rest.
The results, outlined in the Journal of Parenteral and Enteral Nutrition
, found evidence of activity in response and disease stabilization rates. It also found reduction in liver metastasis volume and improved quality of life scores in this group of patients.
While this is the first study to use omega-3 fatty acids with a chemotherapy agent in a cancer setting, the researchers believe the results are encouraging enough to warrant further investigation in a randomized phase III trial.