Statins could scale back breast most cancers mortality charges

In a latest examine revealed in JAMA Community Open, researchers decided the connection between serological levels of cholesterol, statin utilization, and breast most cancers (BC) mortality.

Examine: Statin Use, Ldl cholesterol Degree, and Mortality Amongst Females With Breast Most cancers. Picture Credit score: artemevdokimov/


Breast most cancers is essentially the most prevalent most cancers in ladies internationally, with passable survival charges however poor post-metastasis survival. Statin utilization could improve survival charges in breast most cancers sufferers, in accordance with analysis; nonetheless, most trials don’t take underlying blood levels of cholesterol under consideration.

The first ldl cholesterol metabolite, oxysterol 27-hydroxycholesterol, stimulates tumor improvement and metastasis in BC animal fashions and has been linked to mortality in females with low estrogen ranges.

Ldl cholesterol can also be a precursor for estrogen manufacturing, which raises the chance of breast most cancers. Earlier research, nonetheless, didn’t contemplate concurrent levels of cholesterol or modifications attributable to statin utilization, leading to inconsistent examine outcomes.

Concerning the examine

Within the current population-based, retrospective cohort examine, researchers investigated the influence of statin utilization and serum levels of cholesterol on breast most cancers mortality.

The examine included Finnish ladies with invasive breast most cancers that was not too long ago identified between 1 January 1995 and 31 December 2013. All individuals offered information on hormone receptors and a number of ldl cholesterol measurements.

BC circumstances had been recognized by the Most cancers Registry of Finland utilizing the Worldwide Classification of Ailments, tenth revision (ICD-10) codes. Information extraction included affected person age, prognosis date, tumor extent and histological options, and first breast most cancers therapy.

Earlier than breast most cancers prognosis, mammography screening data had been retrieved from the Mass Inspection Registry. The Charlson Comorbidity Index (CCI) values had been calculated primarily based on comorbidity information within the Care Register for Well being Care database and drug buy information from the Social Insurance coverage Establishment database.

The examine publicity was statin use, statin dosage, and serological ranges of ldl cholesterol, triglyceride (TG), high-density lipoprotein (HDL), and high-density lipoprotein (LDL), measured pre- and post-breast most cancers prognosis. The end result measure was mortality from breast most cancers and different causes between the breast most cancers prognosis date and 31 December 2015.

Cox proportional hazards regression modeling was carried out to find out the hazard ratios (HRs). The workforce excluded females who had greater mortality from breast most cancers and different causes, extra metastatic illness or unknown extent of the tumor, and a touch decrease share with curative-intent surgical procedure as major remedy. The information had been analyzed between January and Might 2022.


The examine included 13,378 BC sufferers, amongst whom the median age was 62 years, they usually had been adopted for a median of 5 years post-breast most cancers prognosis.

Within the follow-up interval, 16% of people died, of which seven p.c died of breast most cancers. In whole, 31% of people had elevated whole serum levels of cholesterol (median worth above 193 mg/dL) earlier than breast most cancers prognosis, and half of the sufferers had elevated whole serum ldl cholesterol post-BC prognosis.

Amongst BC sufferers, 41% had used statins. The multivariate evaluation confirmed that statin utilization earlier than breast most cancers prognosis was associated to an elevated BC mortality danger in comparison with non-use (HR, 1.4).

Pre-diagnostic statin utilization elevated breast most cancers mortality danger even after adjusting for whole serum levels of cholesterol (HR, 1.2). Contrastingly, the workforce noticed a diminished breast most cancers mortality danger related to post-diagnostic statin utilization (HR, 0.9).

The chance decline was greater by rising statin use depth (e.g., for low-density lipoprotein, hazard ratios diminished to 0.66 from 0.73). It was sturdy for people whose serum levels of cholesterol had been diminished after statin utilization  (HR, 0.5) however was not statistically vital in circumstances the place levels of cholesterol didn’t decline (HR, 0.7). Among the many individuals, 980 used statins after breast most cancers prognosis, and the median serum levels of cholesterol had been diminished amongst 781 people.

Mortality from breast most cancers in statin shoppers was diminished amongst sufferers with cancers of the estrogen receptor (ER)-positive kind (HR, 0.8) and people with localized tumors (HR, 0.6).

Amongst sufferers with metastatic tumors, statin utilization was associated to elevated mortality in comparison with non-usage (HR, 1.4). Nonetheless, the all-cause mortality charges had been decrease amongst those that used statins in comparison with non-users adjusting for serological levels of cholesterol (HR, 0.8).

Ldl cholesterol-lowering could also be advantageous since dietary ldl cholesterol and hypercholesterolemia are related to an elevated danger of breast most cancers. Cell multiplication, membrane development, and fluidity require ldl cholesterol. Additional, ldl cholesterol will increase BC cell proliferation and tumor improvement by ER activation.

Ldl cholesterol can also be a precursor to estrogen manufacturing, which is a recognized carcinogen of the mammary gland. Oxysterol derivatives, akin to 27-hydroxycholesterol, function as endogenous ER modulators and might exacerbate cancers amongst ladies with estrogen deficiency.


General, the examine findings confirmed that post-diagnostic statin utilization was associated to decreased breast most cancers mortality than non-usage, mediated by serological levels of cholesterol, indicating that reducing ldl cholesterol with statins may benefit breast most cancers sufferers.

BC danger was additional diminished with extra intensive statin utilization, indicating that statin utilization may influence BC outcomes by mechanisms apart from reductions in levels of cholesterol.

Nonetheless, amongst females with metastatic tumors, the chance was elevated for statin customers, indicating that statins may profit solely sufferers with early-stage breast cancers.

Journal reference:

  • Mika O. Murto, MD et al., (2023) Statin Use, Ldl cholesterol Degree, and Mortality Amongst Females With Breast Most cancers, JAMA Community Open. doi: 10.1001/jamanetworkopen.2023.43861

Emily Thompson

Dr. Emily Thompson is a highly respected medical professional and seasoned health journalist, contributing her expertise to our news website. With a medical degree from Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and over 15 years of experience in clinical practice, Dr. Thompson possesses a deep understanding of various health issues.
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