Advanced chronic obstructive pulmonary disease is associated with high levels of high-density lipoprotein cholesterol

Robert M. Reed, Aldo Iacono, Andrew Defilippis, Michael Eberlein, Reda E. Girgis, Steven Jones

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

25 Scopus citations


Background: Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is an inflammatory systemic disease associated with numerous extrapulmonary manifestations. Amongst these is an increased risk for cardiovascular disease. The mechanisms for this association remain unclear. We sought to examine lipid trends in a well-characterized cohort of patients with severe COPD. Methods: We conducted a retrospective prospective analysis of 126 consecutive individuals evaluated for lung transplantation with a diagnosis of COPD in whom lipid values were available. Observed lipid values were compared with a reference population without severe COPD. Results: Compared with the reference population, mean low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C) levels were slightly reduced at 108 ± 44 vs 117 ± 29.5 mg/dl (p = 0.02) in men but were no different in women. Mean high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL-C) levels were significantly elevated at 62 ± 24 vs 45 ± 12 mg/dl (p < 0.0001) in men and at 83 ± 27 vs 59 ± 16 mg/dl in women (p < 0.0001). Prednisone use correlated with higher HDL-C levels but did not fully explain the extent of elevation. Angiographically proven coronary artery disease was found in 61% of individuals and was unrelated to HDL-C levels. Conclusions: Severe COPD is associated with increased levels of HDL-C, which is partially attributable to oral steroid use. HDL-C in this population is not associated with reduced risk of angiographically proven coronary artery disease.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)674-678
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Heart and Lung Transplantation
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 2011


  • COPD
  • HDL
  • lung transplantation
  • phospholipid transfer protein

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
  • Transplantation


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