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26.05.2022 20:00

New Study from Seraphina Therapeutics Finds that a Good Saturated Fat, C15:0, is Better, Broader and Safer than Omega-3


C15:0, a recently discovered essential fatty acid, demonstrates better and broader clinically-relevant cell-repairing benefits than the leading omega-3.

SAN DIEGO, May 26, 2022 /PRNewswire/ -- A newly published peer-reviewed study in PLOS ONE demonstrated that a beneficial odd-chain saturated fat, called C15:0, is safer and more effective at repairing our body's cells than the purest and highest performing omega-3 fatty acid, eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA).

In a head-to-head study, 12 different human cell systems mimicking various disease states were treated with either C15:0 (pentadecanoic acid) or omega-3. These cell systems included 148 biomarkers relevant to whole body health. This study found that C15:0 and omega-3 shared 10 beneficial effects, primarily around lowered inflammation. However, C15:0 had an additional 26 beneficial effects compared to omega-3 that were relevant to immune, gut, heart, joint, skin, red blood cell and lung health. Further, while omega-3 was toxic to four human cell systems at the highest concentration tested, C15:0 was safe to all cell systems at all concentrations.

"Given our growing understanding of C15:0 as an essential fatty acid, which is required by our bodies to maintain good physiologic health, we were not surprised to see that C15:0 and omega-3 had shared benefits," said Dr. Stephanie Venn-Watson, the study's lead author. "Interestingly, the many additional beneficial effects that were present with C15:0 but not omega-3, suggests that C15:0 may be the essential, essential fatty acid."

Venn-Watson's team had previously discovered C15:0 as the first essential fatty acid to be found since omega-3, 90 years ago. This discovery was published during May 2020 in Nature's Scientific Reports. Since then, over 30 peer-reviewed studies have been published from prestigious institutions around the world linking higher C15:0 to lower risks of multiple chronic diseases, including type 2 diabetes, heart disease, heart failure, and nonalcoholic fatty liver disease. Two of these studies associated higher circulating C15:0 to longer lifespan, while a second team corroborated odd-chain saturated fatty acids, including C15:0, as essential fatty acids. The current study supports that C15:0 is not just associated with better health, but is indeed the cause.

Despite the growing body of science supporting that there are both healthy and unhealthy saturated fats, dietary guidelines continue to recommend reduced intake of all saturated fats.

"A growing body of evidence supports that odd-chain saturated fats, like C15:0, are beneficial for our health. On the other hand, even-chain saturated fats, like C16:0, continue to be associated with poor health," shared Dr. Venn-Watson. "Now we are learning that C15:0 may have a leg up on omega-3s, from skin health to heart health, as well as safety."

The mystery behind these differences is likely solved by a well known Achilles heel of omega-3s. Specifically, omega-3s have multiple double bonds in their chemical structure, which make them particularly susceptible to oxidation. This helps explain why as many as 1 in 2 bottles of omega-3 fish oil supplements may be rancid, as well as why higher levels of omega-3 were toxic to human cells in the current study. In contrast, C15:0 has no double bonds and is not susceptible to oxidation - which gives C15:0 a particular advantage of stability.

Venn-Watson et al. points out that while C15:0 and omega-3 target similar receptors and pathways relevant to supporting immune, metabolic and heart health, previous literature has shown one key difference. Specifically, C15:0 appears to inhibit a key pathway that uses oxidative stress to induce inflammation. In contrast, polyunsaturated fatty acids, including omega-3s, activate this pathway. This may be why, in the current study, C15:0 was better and broader at reducing inflammation compared to omega-3.

"Better, broader and safer cell-repairing properties of C15:0 compared to omega-3s may be due to C15:0's natural resistance to oxidation, especially as we age," said Venn-Watson. "In addition to our ongoing studies, we are excited to see the greater scientific community turn its attention to C15:0. Through this global effort, we are learning more about this good fat and its role in supporting our long-term health and wellness."

Seraphina Therapeutics continues to lead a science-driven movement to increase awareness of C15:0 as a healthy, odd-chain saturated fat and the urgent need to revisit global dietary guidelines around saturated fats. This movement was recently featured as a TEDx San Diego talk.  "The current hypothesis is that population-wide decreased intake of all saturated fats has led to nutritional C15:0 deficiencies, which may be driving the global rise in multiple chronic diseases, including type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and liver disease," said Venn-Watson. "Our goal is to help get C15:0 back into people's lives and global health back on track."

About Seraphina Therapeutics. Inc.
Seraphina Therapeutics, Inc. is a health and wellness company dedicated to advancing global health through the discovery of essential fatty acids and micronutrient therapeutics. Through rigorous breakthrough science, the company develops fatty acid supplements, food fortifiers, and nutritional interventions to strengthen cells, keep mitochondria working and advance cellular homeostasis to counter age-related breakdown. With its team of industry-leading scientists, Seraphina Therapeutics challenges long-held approaches to nutrition, enabling the creation of novel health products designed to support quality of life. For more information, please visit and

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SOURCE Seraphina Therapeutics

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