Erythrocyte membrane fatty acids profile in colorectal cancer patients: A preliminary study

Giuseppe Coviello, Valeria Tutino, Maria Notarnicola, Maria Gabriella Caruso

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background/Aim: The study of fatty acid composition of the erythrocytes' membrane can be considered an appropriate biomarker for investigating the relations of the pattern of fatty acids metabolism to a specific disease. The aim of the present study was to analyze the fatty acid profile in red blood cell membranes of patients with colorectal cancer (CRC). Materials and Methods: Thirteen patients with CRC and 13 patients with no malignant disease were enrolled in the study. Fatty acids were extracted from erythrocytes' membranes and quantified by gas chromatography. The data were analyzed using the Mann-Whitney test. Results: Patients with CRC showed significantly lower mean percentage of n-3 polynunsatured fatty acids (n-3 PUFAs) than controls (5.1% vs. 8.0%, respectively). This finding was reflected in the higher ratio n-6-PUFA/n-3-PUFA observed in cancer patients. Conclusion: Lipidomic analysis of erythrocyte membranes confirmed the presence of an altered fatty acid profile in patients with CRC.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4775-4779
Number of pages5
JournalAnticancer Research
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - Sep 1 2014


  • Cell membranes
  • Colorectal cancer
  • Erythrocytes
  • Fatty acids
  • Lipidomic analysis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cancer Research
  • Oncology


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