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A feeding experiment was conducted on gilthead seabream (Sparus aurata) broodstock to investigate the incidence of n-3 highly unsaturated fatty acids (n-3 HUFA) dietary deficiencies on the lipid composition of female liver, gonads and eggs, in relation to spawning quality. Broodstock were fed a control (C) diet or a n-3 HUFA deficient (D) but linolenic acid rich diet. After 20 weeks of feeding, the results showed that levels of total neutral (TNL) and total polar (TPL) lipids of female gonads and eggs were independent of diet. However the fatty acid composition of phosphatidylcholine (PC), phosphatidylethanolamine (PE) and phosphatidylinositol (PI) of female liver, gonads and eggs in the two groups of fish showed marked differences, reflecting the influence of fatty acid levels in the broodstock diets. This influence was even higher in TNL than in the phospholipid classes examined. In fish fed n-3 HUFA deficient diet, fatty acid composition of TNL of female gonads and eggs reflected the diet more than liver. A higher egg production in broodstock fed C diet (1.8% n-3 HUFA in diet) was extended to spawning quality such as percentages of fertilised and hatched eggs.