Low total cholesterol and low-density lipoprotein associated with aggression and hostility in recent suicide attempters

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T1 - Low total cholesterol and low-density lipoprotein associated with aggression and hostility in recent suicide attempters

AU - Suneson, Klara

AU - Asp, Marie

AU - Träskman-Bendz, Lil

AU - Westrin, Åsa

AU - Ambrus, Livia

AU - Lindqvist, Daniel

PY - 2019

Y1 - 2019

N2 - Low cholesterol levels have been correlated with both suicidal and aggressive behavior in psychiatric patients. Few studies have investigated associations between serum lipid profiles and both aggressive state and trait. Fifty-two psychiatric medication-free inpatients were included in this study after a suicide attempt. Composite scores of “State Aggression” and “Trait Aggression” were calculated using relevant items from the Comprehensive Psychopathological Rating Scale and the Karolinska Scales of Personality. State Aggression was significantly and negatively correlated with total cholesterol (TC) and low-density lipoprotein (LDL). Trait Aggression was also significantly and negatively correlated with LDL, but not TC. There were small but significant mediation effects of severity of anxiety symptoms on the relationship between State Aggression and TC as well as LDL. In exploratory analyses we found that low cholesterol was also associated with personality traits of hostility. Moreover, low cholesterol was more robustly associated with personality trait items related to interpersonal aggression, as opposed to items related to irritability or more indirect, non-overt aggression. Our findings suggest that low cholesterol is associated with both state and trait aggression in suicide attempters. Future mechanistic studies are warranted to better understand the relationship between low cholesterol and high aggression in suicide attempters.

AB - Low cholesterol levels have been correlated with both suicidal and aggressive behavior in psychiatric patients. Few studies have investigated associations between serum lipid profiles and both aggressive state and trait. Fifty-two psychiatric medication-free inpatients were included in this study after a suicide attempt. Composite scores of “State Aggression” and “Trait Aggression” were calculated using relevant items from the Comprehensive Psychopathological Rating Scale and the Karolinska Scales of Personality. State Aggression was significantly and negatively correlated with total cholesterol (TC) and low-density lipoprotein (LDL). Trait Aggression was also significantly and negatively correlated with LDL, but not TC. There were small but significant mediation effects of severity of anxiety symptoms on the relationship between State Aggression and TC as well as LDL. In exploratory analyses we found that low cholesterol was also associated with personality traits of hostility. Moreover, low cholesterol was more robustly associated with personality trait items related to interpersonal aggression, as opposed to items related to irritability or more indirect, non-overt aggression. Our findings suggest that low cholesterol is associated with both state and trait aggression in suicide attempters. Future mechanistic studies are warranted to better understand the relationship between low cholesterol and high aggression in suicide attempters.

KW - Biological

KW - Lipids

KW - Personality

KW - Psychiatry

U2 - 10.1016/j.psychres.2019.01.056

DO - 10.1016/j.psychres.2019.01.056

M3 - Article

VL - 273

SP - 430

EP - 434

JO - Psychiatry Research

T2 - Psychiatry Research

JF - Psychiatry Research

SN - 1872-7123

ER -