Apolipoproteins are major components of lipoproteins such as high-density lipoprotein (HDL) and very-low-density lipoprotein and are considered nontraditional markers in the risk assessment for cardiovascular disease. The goal of this review was to quantify the effects of smoking and smoking cessation on serum levels of apolipoproteins AI, AII, and B and the ratio of apolipoproteins B and AI.
PubMed and Scopus were searched up to June 2021 to identify publications that reported the levels of apolipoproteins AI, AII, and B and the apolipoprotein B/AI ratio in smokers and nonsmokers as well as articles reporting the effect of smoking cessation on the same endpoints. Meta-analyses were performed when a sufficient number (n ≥ 3) of articles evaluating the same outcome were available.
Forty-nine studies had assessed apolipoprotein levels in smokers and nonsmokers. The meta-analyses comparing the levels of apolipoproteins AI and AII showed decreased levels in smokers relative to nonsmokers. On the other hand, the apolipoprotein B levels and apolipoprotein B/AI ratio were increased in smokers relative to nonsmokers. Insufficient publications were available on which to perform meta-analyses on the effects of smoking cessation on apolipoprotein levels.
Smoking is associated with reduced levels of apolipoproteins AI and AII (in line with reduced levels of HLD-cholesterol) and increased apolipoprotein B levels and apolipoprotein B/AI ratio, thereby confirming the negative impact of smoking on lipid metabolism, which contributes to increased cardiovascular risk. More data are needed to elucidate the effects of smoking cessation on these cardiovascular risk endpoints.