Differences in omega-3 long chain polyunsaturated fatty acids composition among Atlantic salmon (Salmo salar L.) families
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- Master's theses (IHA) 
Fish and seafood are considered as the main sources of highly unsaturated omega-3 fatty acids in the human diet and has lots of health beneficial advantages. However, due to the shortage of fish oil in the aqua-feed and replacement of fish oil with plant oil in fish diet, the n-3 content has been decreased in farmed fish. Nowadays, by improving diet formulations and also genetic selection of fish with high content of both eicosapentaenoic acid and docosahexaenoic acid, the industry tries to improve n-3 content in Atlantic salmon. The genes which are involved in the biosynthesis of the very long chain fatty acids in Atlantic salmon are regulated by fatty acids in the diet. And omega-3 composition in salmon has in a previous study been found out to be a heritable trait. The aim of this study was to find out if variation exists in the composition of omega-3 fatty acids in different salmon families from a Norwegian breeding company. Salmon from 10 families, fed the same diet with high concentration of vegetable oil, were selected in October 2012, 10 fish from each family, and the muscle fatty acid composition analyzed. The mean percentage of eicosapentaenoic acid (20:5 n-3, EPA) varied from 2,7 to 3,3 %, the mean percentage of docosahexaenoic acid (22:6 n-3, DHA) varied from 3,9 to 4,9 %, and statistically significant differences were observed among the families. Hardly any significant differences were found between gender, and the content of total fat was not statistically different between families.