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Journal of Lipids
Volume 2014, Article ID 712134, 7 pages
Research Article

Fatty Acid Composition and Levels of Selected Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids in Four Commercial Important Freshwater Fish Species from Lake Victoria, Tanzania

1National Museum of Tanzania, P.O. Box 511, Dar es Salaam, Tanzania
2Department of Aquatic Sciences and Fisheries, University of Dar es Salaam, P.O. Box 35064, Dar es Salaam, Tanzania

Received 21 October 2014; Accepted 9 December 2014; Published 25 December 2014

Academic Editor: Rumiana Koynova

Copyright © 2014 Agnes Robert et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Fatty acids (FAs) particularly ω3 and ω6 polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) play important role in human health. This study aimed to investigate the composition and levels of selected ω3 PUFAs in four commercial fish species, Nile perch (Lates niloticus), Nile tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus), Tilapia zillii, and dagaa (Rastrineobola argentea) from Mwanza Gulf in Lake Victoria. The results indicated that 36 types of FAs with different saturation levels were detected. These FAs were dominated by docosahexaenoic (DHA), eicosapentaenoic (EPA), docosapentaenoic (DPA), and eicosatetraenoic acids. O. niloticus had the highest composition of FAs (34) compared to L. niloticus (27), T. zillii (26), and R. argentea (21). The levels of EPA differed significantly among the four commercial fish species . The highest EPA levels were found in R. argentea followed by L. niloticus and O. niloticus and the lowest in T. zillii. The DPA levels showed no significant difference among the four fish species studied . The study concluded that all four commercial species collected from Mwanza Gulf are good for human health, but R. argentea is the best for consumption because it contains higher levels of ω3 FAs, mainly EPA.