Omega-3 Fatty Acid and Cardiovascular Outcomes: Insights From Recent Clinical Trials

  • Xiaoming Jia
  • Payal Kohli
  • Salim S. ViraniEmail author
Coronary Heart Disease (S. Virani and S. Naderi, Section Editors)
Part of the following topical collections:
  1. Topical Collection on Coronary Heart Disease


Purpose of Review

Omega-3 fatty acids (ω-3 FA) are among the most well-recognized health supplements but their cardiovascular benefits have long been controversial owing to inconsistent results from previous cardiovascular outcomes trials (CVOT). In this article, we provide a short review of existing literature followed by recent randomized clinical trial data, with a discussion of the potential clinical implications of these new findings.

Recent Findings

Data from the randomized, controlled trial REDUCE-IT, when viewed within the context of other recently published trials ASCEND and VITAL, add to a growing body of evidence on the use of ω-3 FA therapies in the treatment of atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease (ASCVD).


Given the different formulations, dosages, and patient populations studied, CVOTs of ω-3 FA have provided valuable insight into the use of these agents in cardioprotection. Current data suggest that higher dosages of pure eicosapentaenoic acid ω-3 FA formulations provide additional benefit in reduction of ASCVD events.


Omega-3 fatty acid Eicosapentaenoic acid Docosahexaenoic acid Icosapent ethyl Cardiovascular outcomes Lipids 


Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of Interest

Xiaoming Jia, Payal Kohli, Salim S. Virani declare no conflict of interest.

Human and Animal Rights and Informed Consent

This article does not contain any studies with human or animal subjects performed by any of the authors.


Papers of particular interest, published recently, have been highlighted as: • Of importance •• Of major importance

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Copyright information

© This is a U.S. Government work and not under copyright protection in the US; foreign copyright protection may apply 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Section of Cardiovascular Research, Department of MedicineBaylor College of MedicineHoustonUSA
  2. 2.Heart and Vascular Institute of ColoradoSCL HealthDenverUSA
  3. 3.Health Policy, Quality and Informatics ProgramMichael E. DeBakey Veterans Affairs Medical Center Health Services Research and Development Center for InnovationsHoustonUSA
  4. 4.Health Services Research and DevelopmentMichael E. DeBakey Veterans Affairs Medical CenterHoustonUSA

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