Skip to main content

Lipid changes occuring in the course of hematological cancers


The relationship between plasma lipid levels and mortality from cardiovascular diseases has been shown in many studies, but there has been far less investigation into their relationship to non-cardiovascular diseases. The aim of this study was to investigate the lipid profile of individuals with hematological malignancies and its relationship to disease activity. 238 patients were included in the study: 84 with acute leukemia, 62 with non-Hodgkin lymphoma, 35 with Hodgkin’s lymphoma, 32 with multiple myeloma, and 25 with myeloproliferative syndrome. The HDL cholesterol level of the patients differed to that of the individuals in the control group in the active disease period for all the analyzed disorders, but only remained statistically significant in the acute leukemia and non-Hodgkin lymphoma groups during the remission period. Smaller differences were observed for the remaining lipid fractions, except for the triglyceride level, which increased in the active disease period in all the analyzed disorders except non-Hodgkin lymphoma. The most pronounced changes in the lipid fractions occurred in the HDL cholesterol level, and were the most remarkable for acute leukemia.



high-density lipoprotein cholesterol


low-density lipoprotein cholesterol


total cholesterol


  1. 1.

    Castelli, W.P., Garrison, R.J., Wilson, P.W., Abbott, R.D., Kalousdian, S. and Kannel, W.B. Incidence of coronary heart disease and lipoprotein cholesterol levels. The Framingham Study. JAMA 256 (1986) 2835–2738.

    PubMed  Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  2. 2.

    Randomised trial of cholesterol lowering in 4444 patients with coronary heart disease: the Scandinavian Simvastatin Survival Study (4S). Lancet 344 (1994) 1383–1389.

  3. 3.

    Kreger, B.E., Anderson, K.M., Schatzkin, A. and Splansky, G.L. Serum cholesterol level, body mass index, and the risk of colon cancer. The Framingham Study. Cancer 70 (1992) 1038–1043.

    PubMed  Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  4. 4.

    Sherwin, R.W., Wentworth, D.N., Cutler, J.A., Hulley, S.B., Kuller, L.H. and Stamler, J. Serum cholesterol levels and cancer mortality in 361,662 men screened for the Multiple Risk Factor Intervention Trial. JAMA 257 (1987) 943–948.

    PubMed  Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  5. 5.

    Fiorenza, A.M., Branchi, A. and Sommariva, D. Serum lipoprotein profile in patients with cancer. A comparison with non-cancer subjects. Int. J. Clin. Lab. Res. 30 (2000) 141–145.

    PubMed  Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  6. 6.

    Musolino, C., Calabro, L., Bellomo, G., Cincotta, M., Di Giacomo, V., Pezzano, C., Loteta, B., Rizzo, V., Guglielmo, S. and Alonci, A. Lipid profile in hematologic neoplasms. Recenti Prog. Med. 93 (2002) 298–301.

    PubMed  Google Scholar 

  7. 7.

    Dessi, S., Batetta, B., Pulisci, D., Accogli, P., Pani, P. and Broccia, G. Total and HDL cholesterol in human hematologic neoplasms. Int. J. Hematol. 54 (1991) 483–486.

    PubMed  CAS  Google Scholar 

  8. 8.

    Scribano, D., Baroni, S., Pagano, L., Zuppi, C., Leone, G. and Giardina, B. Return to normal values of lipid pattern after effective chemotherapy in acute lymphoblastic leukemia. Haematologica 81 (1996) 343–345.

    PubMed  CAS  Google Scholar 

  9. 9.

    Moschovi, M., Trimis, G., Apostolakou, F., Papassotiriou, I. and Tzortzatou-Stathopoulou, F. Serum lipid alterations in acute lymphoblastic leukemia of childhood. J. Pediatr. Hematol. Oncol. 26 (2004) 289–293.

    PubMed  Article  Google Scholar 

  10. 10.

    Kuliszkiewicz-Janus, M., Tuz, M.A. and Baczyński, S. Application of 31P MRS to the analysis of phospholipid changes in plasma of patients with acute leukemia. Biochim. Biophys. Acta 1737 (2005) 11–15.

    PubMed  CAS  Google Scholar 

  11. 11.

    Lorenc, J., Kozak-Michałowska, I. and Polkowska-Kulesza, E. Disorders of lipid and lipoprotein metabolism in patients with chronic lymphocytic leukemia. I. Preliminary evaluation of lipemia and HDL fractions in various stages of the disease. Przegl. Lek. 46 (1989) 713–718.

    PubMed  CAS  Google Scholar 

  12. 12.

    Ginsberg, H.N., Le, N.A. and Gilbert, H.S. Altered high density lipoprotein metabolism in patients with myeloproliferative disorders and hypocholesterolemia. Metabolism 35 (1986) 878–882.

    PubMed  Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  13. 13.

    Gilbert, H.S. and Ginsberg, H. Hypocholesterolemia as a manifestation of disease activity in chronic myelocytic leukemia. Cancer 51 (1983) 1428–1433.

    PubMed  Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  14. 14.

    Ghalaut, V.S., Pahwa, M.B., Sunita and Ghalaut, P.S. Alteration in lipid profile in patients of chronic myeloid leukemia before and after chemotherapy. Clin. Chim. Acta 366 (2006) 239–428.

    PubMed  Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  15. 15.

    Hachem, H., Favre, G., Ghalim, N., Puchois, P., Fruchart, J.C. and Soula, G. Quantitative abnormalities of lipoprotein particles in multiple myeloma. J. Clin. Chem. Clin. Biochem. 25 (1987) 675–679.

    PubMed  CAS  Google Scholar 

  16. 16.

    Kuliszkiewicz-Janus, M. and Baczyński, S. Chemotherapy-associated changes in 31P MRS spectra of sera from patients with multiple myeloma. NMR Biomed 8 (1995) 127–132.

    PubMed  Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  17. 17.

    Kuliszkiewicz-Janus, M. and Baczyński, S. Application of 31P NMR spectroscopy to monitor chemotherapy-associated changes of serum phospholipids in patients with malignant lymphomas. Magn. Reson. Med. 35 (1996) 449–456.

    PubMed  CAS  Google Scholar 

  18. 18.

    van Leeuwen, H.J., Heezius, E.C., Dallinga, G.M., van Strijp, J.A., Verhoef, J. and van Kessel, KP. Lipoprotein metabolism in patients with severe sepsis. Crit. Care Med. 31 (2003) 1359–1366.

    PubMed  Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  19. 19.

    Sakashita, A.M., Bydlowski, S.P., Chamone, D.A. and Maranhao RC. Plasma kinetics of an artificial emulsion resembling chylomicrons in patients with chronic lymphocytic leukemia. Ann. Hematol. 79 (2000) 687–690.

    PubMed  Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  20. 20.

    Baroni, S., Scribano, D., Zuppi, C., Pagano, L., Leone, G. and Giardina, B. Prognostic relevance of lipoprotein cholesterol levels in acute lymphocytic and nonlymphocytic leukemia. Acta Haematol. 96 (1996) 24–28.

    PubMed  CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  21. 21.

    Moran, C.S., Campbell, J.H. and Campbell, G.R. Human leukemia inhibitory factor upregulates LDL-C receptors on liver cells and decreases serum cholesterol in the cholesterol-fed rabbit. Arterioscler. Thromb. Vasc. Biol. 17 (1997) 1267–1273.

    PubMed  CAS  Google Scholar 

  22. 22.

    Goncalves, R.P., Rodrigues, D.G. and Maranhao, R.C. Uptake of high density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesteryl esters by human acute leukemia cells. Leuk. Res. 29 (2005) 955–959.

    PubMed  Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

Download references

Author information



Corresponding author

Correspondence to Małgorzata Kuliszkiewicz-Janus.

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Cite this article

Kuliszkiewicz-Janus, M., Małecki, R. & Mohamed, A.S. Lipid changes occuring in the course of hematological cancers. Cell Mol Biol Lett 13, 465 (2008).

Download citation

Key words

  • Lipid profile
  • HDL-C
  • Hematological cancers