Revealing the role of high-density lipoprotein in colorectal cancer

Aleksandra Zeljkovic*, Jelena Vekic, Marija Mihajlovic, Tamara Gojkovic, Sandra Vladimirov, Dejan Zeljkovic, Vesna Spasojevic-Kalimanovska, Bratislav Trifunovic

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

21 Citations (Scopus)


Colorectal cancer (CRC) is a highly prevalent malignancy with multifactorial etiology, which includes metabolic alterations as contributors to disease development. Studies have shown that lipid status disorders are involved in colorectal carcinogenesis. In line with this, previous studies have also suggested that the serum high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL-C) level decreases in patients with CRC, but more recently, the focus of investigations has shifted toward the exploration of qualitative properties of HDL in this malignancy. Herein, a comprehensive overview of available evidences regarding the putative role of HDL in CRC will be presented. We will analyze existing findings regarding alterations of HDL-C levels but also HDL particle structure and distribution in CRC. In addition, changes in HDL functionality in this malignancy will be discussed. Moreover, we will focus on the genetic regulation of HDL metabolism, as well as the involvement of HDL in disturbances of cholesterol trafficking in CRC. Finally, possible therapeutic implications related to HDL will be presented. Given the available evidence, future studies are needed to resolve all raised issues concerning the suggested protective role of HDL in CRC, its presumed function as a biomarker, and eventual therapeutic approaches based on HDL.

Original languageEnglish
Article number3352
JournalInternational Journal of Molecular Sciences
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2021
Externally publishedYes


  • Cholesterol trafficking
  • Colorectal cancer
  • Genetic background
  • HDL functional properties
  • HDL particle distribution
  • High-density lipoprotein
  • Therapeutic implications


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