Dietary fatty acids change circulating fatty acids, microbial putrefactive postbiotics and betaine status in the cat.
There is a normal variation of polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA) in the foods consumed both by the domestic cat and wild felines. This variation may lead to specific changes in metabolites and circulating fatty acids that influence health and response to disease. Therefore, in order to evaluate the response to these changes in dietary PUFA three foods were formulated: a complete and balanced control food (COF) with no enhanced source of added PUFA (ARA=0.08%, EPA & DHA=0.01%), Test food 1 (E&DF) like the COF with added eicosapentaenoic acid EPA and (docosahexaenoic acid DHA (E&D=0.36%)) from menhaden fish oil, and Test Food 2 (ARAF) like the COF with added arachidonic acid (ARA=0.16%) from liver. All test foods had similar protein concentrations and similar vitamin and mineral concentrations while the PUFA supplemented foods had slightly higher fat concentrations. Cats (n=36) were fed a pre-trial food for 28 days and then assigned to a group fed either the control, E&DF or ARAF for 56 days (12 cats per group). Blood samples were drawn and serum analyzed for fatty acids, albumin, urea, creatinine, cholesterol and triglycerides at the beginning of the study and after consuming the test foods for 28 and 56 days. Plasma was similarly analyzed for metabolomics. Increasing dietary E&D resulted in reduced cholesterol, betaine, dimethyl glycine, sarcosine and 4-ethylphenylsulfate. Increasing dietary ARA resulted in reduced betaine, dimethyl glycine and sarcosine and an increased concentration of indoleacetate, indolepropionate and indoleacetylglutamine. These data suggest a benefit of dietary single carbon metabolism support for cats supplemented with ARA or E&D. Moreover, the reduction in circulating cholesterol and triglycerides through dietary E&D supplementation could benefit cats with hyperlipidemia. Further research into the interrelationship between dietary PUFA and the gut microbe will benefit from the data showing that ARA increased specific positive postbiotics (i.e., indoleacetate, indolepropionate) while E&D supplementation showed the benefit of reducing some postbiotics which have been associated with reduced health (4-ethylphenylsulfate, 3-methyl catechol sulfate and 4-vinylphenol sulfate).