William E.M. Lands
William E.M. Lands (born July 22, 1930) is an American nutritional biochemist who is among the world's foremost authorities on essential fatty acids. Lands graduated from University of Michigan in 1951 and served on the faculty there from 1955 to 1980. He then moved to University of Illinois (1980–1990) and subsequently the National Institutes of Health (1990–2002), where he served as the Senior Scientific Advisor to the Director of the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism. He was named a Fellow by the American Society for Nutrition, Society for Redox Biology and Medicine, International Society for the Study of Fatty Acids and Lipids, and American Association for the Advancement of Science. Lands is credited for discovering the beneficial effects of balancing the effects of excess omega-6 fatty acids with dietary omega-3 fatty acids. The effect of essential fatty acids on formation of hormones is documented in his book, "Fish, Omega-3 and Human Health" and in interviews for the lay public. University of Michigan's Department of Biological Chemistry endowed a "Lectureship on the Biochemical Basis for the Physiology of Essential Nutrients" in honor of William E.M. Lands.
Lands Lecturers have included:
- 2005 Hee Young Kim from NIAAA on essentiality of docosahexaenoic acid in the brain
- 2006 James C. Fleet from Purdue University on molecular actions of Vitamin D
- 2007 Charles Brenner from University of Iowa on discovery of new regulated steps in NAD metabolism
- 2008 Christopher J. Frederickson from University of Texas Medical Branch on zinc secreting cells
- 2009 Richard Wurtman from Massachusetts Institute of Technology on nutrition and synapse health
- 2010 Patrick Stover from Cornell University on folate-genome interactions
- 2011 Vadim Gladyshev from Harvard University on selenium and redox biology
- 2012 Noa Noy from Case Western Reserve University on retinoic acid signaling in metabolic diseases
- 2013 Bruce Hammock from University of California, Davis on omega-3 fatty acids and cancer
- 2014 Andrew Dannenberg from Weill Medical College on adipose inflammation and breast cancer
- 2015 Alan Brash from Vanderbilt University on arachidonic acid metabolites and their role in pathophysiological processes
- 2016 David Sabatini from the Whitehead Institute on amino acid sensing mechanisms.
- 2017 Robert Farese, Jr from Harvard Medical School on fat synthesis and storage in lipid droplets
- 2018 Steven Kliewer from Texas Southwestern Medical Center on metabolic stress hormone FGF21
Upon receipt of a Pfizer Biomedical Research Award in 1985, Lands developed an empirical mathematical relationship showing how metabolism of dietary omega-3 and omega-6 essential fatty acids leads to predictable proportions of their elongated highly unsaturated derivatives (HUFA) accumulated in tissue lipids. After retirement, he changed from publishing as William E.M. Lands to Bill Lands as he put increased attention to primary prevention of health disorders related to excessive actions of omega-6 mediators  and describing consequences of imbalanced dietary intakes of omega-3 and omega-6 nutrients. More recently, Lands described an Omega 3-6 Balance Score that indicates the likely impact of individual food items on the balance of HUFA accumulated in tissues. Lands emphasized that efficient conversion of linoleic acid (18:2n-6) to the n-6 highly unsaturated fatty acid (n-6HUFA), arachidonic acid (20:4n-6), competitively displaces n-3 HUFA from tissue phospholipids and creates a narrow therapeutic window for dietary linoleic in the absence of n-3 nutrients. The HUFA balance seen with a finger-tip blood-spot assay  monitors dietary intakes of essential fatty acids and predicts the likely intensity of n-6 eicosanoid-mediated pathophysiology. Many chronic inflammatory conditions made worse by actions of n-6 eicosanoid mediators (see ref.10) might be lessened by eating “functional foods”  that have more positive omega 3-6 balance scores (see ref.7) and shift the HUFA balance toward lower values of % n-6 in HUFA. The current balance of n-3 and n-6 nutrients in the average American diet maintains a HUFA balance near 80% n-6 in HUFA rather than 60% for traditional Mediterranean diets or 35% for traditional Japanese diets (see ref.7). The benefits and risks for these different HUFA balances help interpret the lack of success of many large expensive clinical trials intended to reduce cardiovascular deaths.
- William E.M. Lands (2005) Fish, Omega-3 And Human Health. American Oil Chemists Society, ISBN 1-893997-81-2
Classics Reprints in Biological Chemistry
The editors of The Journal of Biological Chemistry named his 1958 paper [Nicole Kresge, Robert D. Simoni, and Robert L. Hill, Journal of Biological Chemistry Classics, v. 284, p. e3, 2009. http://www.jbc.org/content/284/20/e3] as a "Classic" and published a "Reflections" overview of his work in 2011 [ Lands, B. Everything Is Connected to Everything Else. The Journal of Biological Chemistry 286, 43589-43595. http://www.jbc.org/content/286/51/43589].
- Nicole Kresge, Robert D. Simoni, and Robert L. Hill, Journal of Biological Chemistry Classics, v. 284, p. e3, 2009
- Lands, W.E.M.; et al. (1992). "Maintenance of lower proportions of n-6 eicosanoid precursors in phospholipids of human plasma in response to added dietary n-3 fatty acids". Biochim. Biophys. Acta. 1180 (2): 147–162. doi:10.1016/0925-4439(92)90063-s. PMID 1463766.
- Lands, B (Mar 2008). "A critique of paradoxes in current advice on dietary lipids". Prog Lipid Res. 47 (2): 77–106. doi:10.1016/j.plipres.2007.12.001. PMID 18177743.
- Lands, B (Jul 2009). "Planning primary prevention of coronary disease". Curr Atheroscler Rep. 11 (4): 272–80. doi:10.1007/s11883-009-0042-6. PMID 19500490.
- Lands, B (2011). "Prevent the cause, not just the symptoms". Prost. Other Lipid Med. 96 (1–4): 90–93. doi:10.1016/j.prostaglandins.2011.07.003. PMID 21827870.
- Lands, B (Dec 2011). "Reflections: Everything is connected to everything else". J. Biol. Chem. 286 (51): 43589–43595. doi:10.1074/jbc.x111.318873. PMC 3243542. PMID 22045809.
- Lands, B; Lamoreaux, E (2012). "Describing essential fatty acid balance as 3 - 6 differences rather than 3/6 ratios". Nutrition & Metabolism. 9 (1): 46–54. doi:10.1186/1743-7075-9-46. PMC 3533819. PMID 22624598.
- Lands, B (2014). "Historical perspectives on the impact of n-3 and n-6 nutrients on health". Prog Lipid Res. 55: 17–29. doi:10.1016/j.plipres.2014.04.002. PMID 24794260.
- Bibus, D.; Lands, B. (2015). "Balancing proportions of competing omega-3 and omega-6 highly unsaturated fatty acids (HUFA) in tissue lipids". Prostaglandins Leukot Essent Fatty Acids. 99: 19–23. doi:10.1016/j.plefa.2015.04.005. PMID 26002802.
- Lands, B (2015). "Omega-3 PUFAs lower the propensity for arachidonic acid cascade over-reactions". BioMed Res Int. 2015: 555. doi:10.1155/2015/285135. PMC 4537720. PMID 26301244.
- 11. Clark C, Lands B. 2015. Creating Benefits from Omega-3 Functional Foods and Nutraceuticals. Food and Nutrition Sciences 6:1613-1623. https://dx.doi.org/10.4236/fns.2015.617166
- 12. Lands B. 2016. Benefit-Risk Assessment of Fish Oil in Preventing Cardiovascular Disease. Drug Safety 39(9):787-799. https://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s40264-016-0438-5