Research Article

Raised serum urate concentration as risk factor for premature mortality in middle aged men: relation to death from cancer.

Br Med J (Clin Res Ed) 1983; 287 doi: (Published 02 July 1983) Cite this as: Br Med J (Clin Res Ed) 1983;287:7
  1. B Petersson,
  2. E Trell


    Low serum cholesterol concentrations are associated with deaths from cancer. This association was found in a prospective study of middle aged men in Malmö and consideration of possible explanations for the lowering of serum cholesterol prompted an analysis of serum urate in relation to deaths from cancer. A total of 127 of the 7725 participants in the Malmö study had died since screening. A weakly positive but significant correlation between raised serum urate concentration and total mortality was found. This correlation was wholly explained by neoplastic deaths (p less than 0.01), while there were no associations with alcohol related deaths or with deaths from coronary heart disease. When the deaths from cancer were classified as "early" or "late"--that is, occurring less than or more than 2.5 years after the screening--the correlation between raised urate concentrations and cancer mortality was confined to the "early" deaths (p less than 0.001). Further studies are needed to substantiate the relation between raised serum urate concentrations and fatal neoplasia. Nevertheless, these findings weigh against recent suggestions that uric acid has an antioxidant protective effect against cancer.