The Clinical Significance of Alkaline Phosphatase Levels in Multiple Myeloma

By Robert Dillard - Last Updated: December 15, 2020

Alkaline phosphatase (ALP) plays a different clinical role in multiple myeloma (MM) than other neoplasms and may serve as a discriminating marker in detecting bone lesions, according to a study published in the Journal of Bone Oncology.

Researchers of this study sought to compare plasma ALP levels in patients with MM and solid cancers and metastatic lesions to the bone. They performed an observational retrospective study comprised of just over 900 patients (49% with MM, 51% with solid cancers, 100% had bone lesions).

According to the results of the study, among patients with MM, ALP values were mostly normal compared with patients with solid cancers and bone lesions. This difference is independent of stage, number, and type of bone lesions, the researchers noted.

“This study suggests that plasma ALP has a different clinical significance in MM than in other neoplasms and could be used as a discriminating marker in presence of bone lesions,” the researchers concluded. “In particular, lower or normal values, should suggest further investigations such as urinary and serum electrophoresis, associated with bone marrow aspirate in case of the presence of a monoclonal component, in order to confirm or exclude a MM diagnosis.”