Serum immunoglobulin free light chain correlates with tumor burden markers in Waldenstrom macroglobulinemia

Leuk Lymphoma. 2008 Jun;49(6):1104-7. doi: 10.1080/10428190802074619.


The serum IgM level has been utilised as a marker of tumor progression and to assess response to therapy in patients with Waldenstrom macroglobulinemia (WM). However, there are many limitations to the IgM protein level. The objective of this study was to evaluate the association of known tumor burden markers and prognostic factors with serum free light chain (sFLC) in 98 patients with WM. We demonstrated that sFLC measurement accurately differentiated IgM-MGUS compared with WM reflecting a measurement of tumor burden. In univariate and multivariate analysis, median sFLC at the cut-off at 60 mg/L was higher for WM patients with low hemoglobin and high beta2M, when we applied the WM-IPSS cut-offs, but showed no association with IgM level. This study demonstrates that sFLC is a new marker in WM disease. Further analysis is required to prospectively study the role of sFLC in monitoring response to therapy and as a prognostic marker in WM patients.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Multicenter Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Biomarkers, Tumor / blood*
  • Female
  • Hemoglobins / metabolism
  • Humans
  • Immunoglobulin Light Chains / blood*
  • Immunoglobulin M / blood*
  • International Agencies
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Paraproteinemias / immunology
  • Prognosis
  • Survival Rate
  • Waldenstrom Macroglobulinemia / immunology*
  • beta 2-Microglobulin / blood
  • beta 2-Microglobulin / immunology


  • Biomarkers, Tumor
  • Hemoglobins
  • Immunoglobulin Light Chains
  • Immunoglobulin M
  • beta 2-Microglobulin