Content » Vol 65, Issue 114

Atopic Dermatitis and Essential Fatty Acids: a Biochemical Basis for Atopy?

Steve Wright
DOI: 10.2340/00015555114143145


The effects of dietary supplementation with evening primrose oil (Efamol) in 99 patients with atopic dermatitis were investigated in a double blind, controlled crossover study. Simultaneously, plasma phospholipid essential fatty acid status was determined in 50 of these patients before and after treatment. In a separate study, lymphocyte subsets and mitogen responses were investigated in 15 atopic patients before and after treatment. The conclusion is that evening primrose oil improves atopic dermatitis; an abnormality of the enzyme delta-6-desaturase is proposed to explain the biochemical findings. Finally, it is concluded that the therapeutic effect of evening primrose oil is unlikely to be mediated through a primarily immunological mechanism.


Supplementary content


Not logged in! You need to login/create an account to comment on articles. Click here to login/create an account.