Is there a role for the platelet-to-lymphocyte ratio in chronic lymphocytic leukemia?

Ziad Bakouny, 1 Elie El Rassy,* 1 Fares Yared, 1 Antoine Abi Lutfallah, 1 Marwan Ghosn, 1 Fadi Farhat, 1 and Joseph Kattan 1

1Department of Hematology–Oncology, Hotel-Dieu de France University Hospital, Faculty of Medicine, Saint Joseph University, Beirut, Lebanon

*Author for correspondence: moc.liamtoh@yssar.eile



The rationale for platelet-to-lymphocyte ratio (PLR) in chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) is that both the platelet and lymphocyte counts are affected by the CLL pathogenesis and could influence treatment decision-making.


Demographic and clinical data of CLL patients diagnosed at our institution between 1989 and 2013 were collected. Cox regression models were used to evaluate the role of PLR in the duration of watchful waiting, postdiagnosis survival and postchemotherapy survival.


The data of 100 patients with CLL were reviewed for this study. The PLR correlated only to watchful waiting in the univariable analysis (Hazard ratio = 0.48 [0.32–0.73]; p = 0.018). In the multivariable analysis, the duration of watchful waiting was determined by Binet staging and lymphocyte count (p < 0.001). The postdiagnosis survival was determined by age (p = 0.002) and lymphocyte count (p = 0.010).


The PLR did not seem to act as a prognostic biomarker for CLL.

Keywords: chronic lymphocytic leukemia, CLL, platelet-to-lymphocyte ratio, PLR