The detection of gene promoter hypermethylation in sputum is a promising molecular marker for early lung cancer detection. Epidemiologic studies suggest that dietary fruits and vegetables and the micronutrients they contain may reduce risk of lung cancer. This investigation evaluated whether diet and multi-vitamin use influence the prevalence for gene methylation in the cells exfoliated from the aerodigestive tract of current and former smokers. Members (n = 1101) of the Lovelace Smokers Cohort completed the Harvard Food Frequency Questionnaire and provided a sputum sample that was assessed for promoter methylation of eight genes commonly silenced in lung cancer and associated with risk for this disease. Methylation status was categorized as low (< 2 genes methylated) or high (≥2 genes methylated). Logistic regression models were used to identify associations between methylation status and 21 dietary variables hypothesized to affect the acquisition of gene methylation. Significant protection against methylation was observed for leafy green vegetables (OR = 0.83 per 12 monthly servings, CI: 0.74, 0.93) and folate (OR = 0.84 per 750 mcg/day, CI: 0.72, 0.99). Protection against gene methylation was also seen with current use of multi-vitamins (OR = 0.57, CI: 0.40, 0.83). This is the first cohort-based study to identify dietary factors associated with reduced promoter methylation in cells exfoliated from the airway epithelium of smokers. Novel interventions to prevent lung cancer should be developed based on the ability of diet and dietary supplements to affect reprogramming of the epigenome.
gene methylation; folate; multi-vitamins; green vegetables; smokers
Gene promoter hypermethylation is now regarded as a promising biomarker for the risk and progression of lung cancer. The one-carbon metabolism pathway is postulated to affect deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) methylation because it is responsible for the generation of S-adenosylmethionine (SAM), the methyl donor for cellular methylation reactions. This study investigated the association of single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in six one-carbon metabolism-related genes with promoter hypermethylation in sputum DNA from non-Hispanic white smokers in the Lovelace Smokers Cohort (LSC) (n = 907). Logistic regression was used to assess the association of SNPs with hypermethylation using a high/low methylation cutoff. SNPs in the cystathionine beta synthase (CBS) and 5-methyltetrahydrofolate-homocysteine methyltransferase reductase (MTRR) genes were significantly associated with high methylation in males [CBS rs2850146 (-8283G > C),
OR = 4.9; 95% CI: 1.98, 12.2, P = 0.0006] and low methylation in females [MTRR rs3776467 (7068A > G), OR = 0.57, 95% CI: 0.42, 0.77, P = 0.0003]. The variant allele of rs2850146 was associated with reduced gene expression and increased plasma homocysteine (Hcy) concentrations. Three plasma metabolites, Hcy, methionine and dimethylglycine, were associated with increased risk for gene methylation. These studies suggest that SNPs in CBS and MTRR have sex-specific associations with aberrant methylation in the lung epithelium of smokers that could be mediated by the affected one-carbon metabolism and transsulfuration in the cells.
Abbreviations:CBScystathionine beta synthaseDNAdeoxyribonucleic acidHBEChuman bronchial epithelial cellHcyhomocysteineLD, linkage disequilibrium; LSClovelace Smokers CohortMAFminor allele frequencyMTHFRmethylenetetrahydrofolate reductaseMTRRmethyltransferase reductaseSNPsingle nucleotide polymorphismsSAHS-adenosylhomocysteineSAMS-adenosylmethionine
The repair of DNA double-strand breaks (DSBs) is the major mechanism to maintain genomic stability in response to irradiation. We hypothesized that genetic polymorphisms in DSB repair genes may affect clinical outcomes among non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) patients treated with definitive radio(chemo)therapy. We genotyped six potentially functional single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) (i.e., RAD51 −135G>C/rs1801320 and −172G>T/rs1801321, XRCC2 4234G>C/rs3218384 and R188H/rs3218536 G>A, XRCC3 T241M/rs861539 and NBN E185Q/rs1805794) and estimated their associations with overall survival (OS) and radiation pneumonitis (RP) in 228 NSCLC patients. We found a predictive role of RAD51 −135G>C SNP in RP development (adjusted hazard ratio [HR] = 0.52, 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.31–0.86, P = 0.010 for CG/CC vs. GG). We also found that RAD51 −135G>C and XRCC2 R188H SNPs were independent prognostic factors for overall survival (adjusted HR = 1.70, 95% CI, 1.14–2.62, P = 0.009 for CG/CC vs. GG; and adjusted HR = 1.70; 95% CI, 1.02–2.85, P = 0.043 for AG vs. GG, respectively) and that the SNP-survival association was most pronounced in the presence of RP. Our study suggests that HR genetic polymorphisms, particularly RAD51 −135G>C, may influence overall survival and radiation pneumonitis in NSCLC patients treated with definitive radio(chemo)therapy. Large studies are needed to confirm our findings.
The breast cancer 1 and 2, early onset (BRCA1 and BRCA2) genes are important for double-strand break repair by homologous recombination. Cells with inactivating mutations of the BRCA1 or BRCA2 tumor suppressor genes show increased sensitivity to Poly-ADP ribose polymerase (PARP)-inhibitors in vitro. Sporadic breast tumors with BRCA1 promoter hypermethylation show a similar phenotype to familial BRCA1 patient tumors termed “BRCAness.” Sporadic ovarian tumors with functional inactivation of BRCA1 by hypermethylation will also have the BRCA-deficiency phenocopy. The loss of BRCA1 expression associated with promoter hypermethylation will disrupt BRCA-associated DNA repair and may sensitize tumors to BRCA-directed therapies. Thus, the determination of methylation status of BRCA1 may be an important predictive classifier of response to PARP-inhibitor therapy. The methylation, and thereby functional, status of other genes implicated in the wider BRCA/homologous recombination (HR) pathway may also be relevant to the prediction of response to PARP-inhibitor therapy. Here, we describe the four optimal technologies for assaying the promoter methylation status of BRCA1 and/or other genes.
BRCA1; Hypermethylation; PARP; Bisulfite sequencing; Pyrosequencing; Quantitative MSP; Methylation beadchip
The detection of tumor suppressor gene promoter methylation in sputum-derived exfoliated cells predicts early lung cancer. Here we identified genetic determinants for this epigenetic process and examined their biological effects on gene regulation. A two-stage approach involving discovery and replication was employed to assess the association between promoter hypermethylation of a 12-gene panel and common variation in 40 genes involved in carcinogen metabolism, regulation of methylation, and DNA damage response in members of the Lovelace Smokers Cohort (n=1434). Molecular validation of three identified variants was conducted using primary bronchial epithelial cells. Association of study-wide significance (P<8.2×10−5) was identified for rs1641511, rs3730859, and rs1883264 in TP53, LIG1, and BIK, respectively. These SNPs were significantly associated with altered expression of the corresponding genes in primary bronchial epithelial cells. In addition, rs3730859 in LIG1 was also moderately associated with increased risk for lung cancer among Caucasian smokers. Together, our findings suggest that genetic variation in DNA replication and apoptosis pathways impacts the propensity for gene promoter hypermethylation in the aerodigestive tract of smokers. The incorporation of genetic biomarkers for gene promoter hypermethylation with clinical and somatic markers may improve risk assessment models for lung cancer.
DNA damage response; promoter hypermethylation; single nucleotide polymorphism; sputum; smoker
The X-ray repair cross complementing 1 (XRCC1) protein is required for viability and efficient repair of DNA single-strand breaks (SSBs) in rodents. XRCC1-deficient mouse or hamster cells are hypersensitive to DNA damaging agents generating SSBs and display genetic instability after such DNA damage. The presence of certain polymorphisms in the human XRCC1 gene has been associated with altered cancer risk, but the role of XRCC1 in SSB repair (SSBR) in human cells is poorly defined. To elucidate this role, we used RNA interference to modulate XRCC1 protein levels in human cell lines. A reduction in XRCC1 protein levels resulted in decreased SSBR capacity as measured by the comet assay and intracellular NAD(P)H levels, hypersensitivity to the cell killing effects of the DNA damaging agents methyl methanesulfonate (MMS), hydrogen peroxide and ionizing radiation and enhanced formation of micronuclei following exposure to MMS. Lowered XRCC1 protein levels were also associated with a significant delay in S-phase progression after exposure to MMS. These data clearly demonstrate that XRCC1 is required for efficient SSBR and genomic stability in human cells.
Aberrant promoter hypermethylation is one of the major mechanisms in carcinogenesis and some critical growth regulatory genes have shown commonality in methylation across solid tumors. Twenty-six genes, 14 identified through methylation in colon and breast cancers, were evaluated using primary lung adenocarcinomas (n = 175) from current, former and never smokers. Tumor specificity of methylation was validated through comparison of 14 lung cancer cell lines to normal human bronchial epithelial cells derived from bronchoscopy of 20 cancer-free smokers. Twenty-five genes were methylated in 11–81% of primary tumors. Prevalence for methylation of TNFRSF10C, BHLHB5 and BOLL was significantly higher in adenocarcinomas from never smokers than smokers. The relation between methylation of individual genes was examined using pairwise comparisons. A significant association was seen between 138 (42%) of the possible 325 pairwise comparisons. Most notably, methylation of MMP2, BHLHB4 or p16 was significantly associated with methylation of 16–19 other genes, thus predicting for a widespread methylation phenotype. Kaplan–Meier log-rank test and proportional hazard models identified a significant association between methylation of SULF2 (a pro-growth, -angiogenesis and -migration gene) and better patient survival (hazard ratio = 0.23). These results demonstrate a high degree of commonality for targeted silencing of genes between lung and other solid tumors and suggest that promoter hypermethylation in cancer is a highly co-ordinated event.
To address the association between sequence variants within the MGMT promoter-enhancer region and methylation of MGMT in premalignant lesions from smokers and lung adenocarcinomas, their biological effects on gene regulation, and targeting MGMT for therapy.
SNPs identified through sequencing a 1.9kb fragment 5' of MGMT were examined in relation to MGMT methylation in 169 lung adenocarcinomas and 1731 sputum samples from smokers. The effect of promoter haplotypes on MGMT expression was tested using a luciferase reporter assay and cDNA expression analysis along with allele-specific sequencing for methylation. The response of MGMT methylated lung cancer cell lines to the alkylating agent temozolomide was assessed.
The A allele of rs16906252 and the haplotype containing this SNP were strongly associated with increased risk for MGMT methylation in adenocarcinomas (ORs ≥ 94). This association was observed to a lesser extent in sputum samples in both smoker cohorts. The A allele was selectively methylated in primary lung tumors and cell lines heterozygous for rs16906252. With the most common haplotype as the reference, a 20–41% reduction in promoter activity was seen for the haplotype carrying the A allele that correlated with lower MGMT expression. The sensitivity of lung cancer cell lines to temozolamide was strongly correlated with levels of MGMT methylation and expression.
These studies provide strong evidence that the A allele of a MGMT promoter-enhancer SNP is a key determinant for MGMT methylation in lung carcinogenesis. Moreover, temozolamide treatment may benefit a subset of lung cancer patients methylated for MGMT.
MGMT; allele specific methylation; single nucleotide polymorphism; sputum; lung cancer
Ionizing radiation is a breast carcinogen that induces DNA double strand breaks (DSBs), and variation in genes involved in the DNA DSB response has been implicated in radiation-induced breast cancer. The Women’s Environmental, Cancer and Radiation Epidemiology (WECARE) Study is a population-based study of cases with contralateral breast cancer (CBC) and matched controls with unilateral breast cancer. The location-specific radiation dose received to the contralateral breast was estimated from radiotherapy records and mathematical models. 152 SNPs in six genes (CHEK2, MRE11A, MDC1, NBN, RAD50, TP53BP1) involved in the DNA DSBs response were genotyped. No variants or haplotypes were associated with CBC risk (649 cases, 1284 controls) and no variants were found to interact with radiation dose. Carriers of a RAD50 haplotype exposed to ≥1Gy had an increased risk of CBC compared with unexposed carriers (RR=4.31 (95% CI 1.93-9.62)); with an excess relative risk (ERR)/Gy = 2.13 (95% CI 0.61-5.33)). Although the results of this study were largely null, carriers of a haplotype in RAD50 treated with radiation, had a greater CBC risk than unexposed carriers. This suggests that carriers of this haplotype may be susceptible to the DNA-damaging effects of radiation therapy associated with radiation-induced breast cancer.
DNA repair; haplotypes; polymorphisms; radiation; contralateral breast cancer
Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is a disorder associated to cigarette smoke and lung cancer (LC). Since epigenetic changes in oncogenes and tumor suppressor genes (TSGs) are clearly important in the development of LC. In this study, we hypothesize that tobacco smokers are susceptible for methylation in the promoter region of TSGs in airway epithelial cells when compared with non-smoker subjects. The purpose of this study was to investigate the usefulness of detection of genes promoter methylation in sputum specimens, as a complementary tool to identify LC biomarkers among smokers with early COPD.
We determined the amount of DNA in induced sputum from patients with COPD (n = 23), LC (n = 26), as well as in healthy subjects (CTR) (n = 33), using a commercial kit for DNA purification, followed by absorbance measurement at 260 nm. The frequency of CDKN2A, CDH1 and MGMT promoter methylation in the same groups was determined by methylation-specific polymerase chain reaction (MSP). The Fisher’s exact test was employed to compare frequency of results between different groups.
DNA concentration was 7.4 and 5.8 times higher in LC and COPD compared to the (CTR) (p < 0.0001), respectively. Methylation status of CDKN2A and MGMT was significantly higher in COPD and LC patients compared with CTR group (p < 0.0001). Frequency of CDH1 methylation only showed a statistically significant difference between LC patients and CTR group (p < 0.05).
We provide evidence that aberrant methylation of TSGs in samples of induced sputum is a useful tool for early diagnostic of lung diseases (LC and COPD) in smoker subjects.
The abstract MUST finish with the following text: Virtual Slides The virtual slide(s) for this article can be found here: http://www.diagnosticpathology.diagnomx.eu/vs/1127865005664160
DNA methylation; Sputum; Lung cancer; COPD
Genetic variations in DNA double-strand break repair genes can influence the ability of a cell to repair damaged DNA and alter an individual’s susceptibility to cancer. We studied whether polymorphisms in DNA double-strand break repair genes are associated with an increased risk of glioma development.
We genotyped 10 potentially functional single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in 7 DNA double-strand break repair pathway genes (XRCC3, BRCA2, RAG1, XRCC5, LIG4, XRCC4 and ATM) in a case–control study including 384 glioma patients and 384 cancer-free controls in a Chinese Han population. Genotypes were determined using the OpenArray platform.
In the single-locus analysis there was a significant association between gliomas and the LIG4 rs1805388 (Ex2 +54C>T, Thr9Ile) TT genotype (adjusted OR, 3.27; 95% CI, 1.87-5.71), as well as the TC genotype (adjusted OR, 1.62; 95% CI, 1.20-2.18). We also found that the homozygous variant genotype (GG) of XRCC4 rs1805377 (IVS7-1A>G, splice-site) was associated with a significantly increased risk of gliomas (OR, 1.77; 95% CI, 1.12-2.80). Interestingly, we detected a significant additive and multiplicative interaction effect between the LIG4 rs1805388 and XRCC4 rs1805377 polymorphisms with an increasing risk of gliomas. When we stratified our analysis by smoking status, LIG4 rs1805388 was associated with an increased glioma risk among smokers.
These results indicate for the first time that LIG4 rs1805388 and XRCC4 rs1805377, alone or in combination, are associated with a risk of gliomas.
DNA double-strand breaks (DSBs); Single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs); Glioma; Susceptibility
Rationale: Wood smoke–associated chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is common in women in developing countries but has not been adequately described in developed countries.
Objectives: Our objective was to determine whether wood smoke exposure was a risk factor for COPD in a population of smokers in the United States and whether aberrant gene promoter methylation in sputum may modify this association.
Methods: For this cross-sectional study, 1,827 subjects were drawn from the Lovelace Smokers' Cohort, a predominantly female cohort of smokers. Wood smoke exposure was self-reported. Postbronchodilator spirometry was obtained, and COPD outcomes studied included percent predicted FEV1, airflow obstruction, and chronic bronchitis. Effect modification of wood smoke exposure with current cigarette smoke, ethnicity, sex, and promoter methylation of lung cancer-related genes in sputum on COPD outcomes were separately explored. Multivariable logistic and poisson regression models were used for binary and rate-based outcomes, respectively.
Measurements and Main Results: Self-reported wood smoke exposure was independently associated with a lower percent predicted FEV1 (point estimate [± SE] −0.03 ± 0.01) and a higher prevalence of airflow obstruction and chronic bronchitis (odds ratio, 1.96; 95% confidence interval, 1.52–2.52 and 1.64 (95% confidence interval, 1.31–2.06, respectively). These associations were stronger among current cigarette smokers, non-Hispanic whites, and men. Wood smoke exposure interacted in a multiplicative manner with aberrant promoter methylation of the p16 or GATA4 genes on lower percent predicted FEV1.
Conclusions: These studies identify a novel link between wood smoke exposure and gene promoter methylation that synergistically increases the risk for reduced lung function in cigarette smokers.
wood smoke; cigarette smokers; airflow obstruction; gene promoter methylation in sputum DNA
The genome of the halophilic archaeon Halobacterium sp. strain NRC-1 encodes homologs of the eukaryotic Mre11 and Rad50 proteins, which are involved in the recognition and end processing of DNA double-strand breaks in the homologous recombination repair pathway. We have analyzed the phenotype of Halobacterium deletion mutants lacking mre11 and/or rad50 after exposure to UV-C radiation, an alkylating agent (N-methyl-N′-nitro-N-nitrosoguanidine), and γ radiation, none of which resulted in a decrease in survival of the mutant strains compared to that of the background strain. However, a decreased rate of repair of DNA double-strand breaks in strains lacking the mre11 gene was observed using pulsed-field gel electrophoresis. These observations led to the hypothesis that Mre11 is essential for the repair of DNA double-strand breaks in Halobacterium, whereas Rad50 is dispensable. This is the first identification of a Rad50-independent function for the Mre11 protein, and it represents a shift in the Archaea away from the eukaryotic model of homologous recombination repair of DNA double-strand breaks.
Aberrant methylation in the promoter region of cancer-related genes leads to gene transcriptional inactivation and plays an integral role in lung tumorigenesis. Recent studies demonstrated that promoter methylation was detected not only in lung tumors from patients with lung cancer but also in sputum of smokers without the disease, suggesting the potential for aberrant gene promoter methylation in sputum as a predictive marker for lung cancer. In the present study, we investigated promoter methylation of 4 genes frequently detected in lung tumors, including p16, MGMT, RASSF1A and DAPK genes, in sputum samples obtained from 107 individuals, including 34 never-smoking females and 73 mostly smoking males, who had no evidence of lung cancer but who were exposed to smoky coal emission in Xuan Wei County, China, where lung cancer rate is more than 6 times the Chinese national average rate. Forty nine of the individuals showed evidence of chronic bronchitis while the remaining 58 individuals showed no such a symptom. Promoter methylation of p16, MGMT, RASSF1A and DAPK was detected in 51.4% (55/107), 17.8% (19/107), 29.9% (32/107), and 15.9% (17/107) of the sputum samples from these individuals, respectively. There were no differences in promoter methylation frequencies of any of these genes according to smoking status or gender of the subjects or between individuals with chronic bronchitis and those without evidence of such a symptom. Therefore, individuals exposed to smoky coal emissions in this region harbored in their sputum frequent promoter methylation of these genes that have been previously found in lung tumors and implicated in lung cancer development.
Smoky coal emissions; Gene promoter methylation; Lung cancer
Polymorphisms in DNA repair genes have been associated to repair DNA lesions, and might contribute to the individual susceptibility to develop different types of cancer. Nucleotide excision repair (NER), base excision repair (BER), and double-strand break repair (DSBR) are the main DNA repair pathways. We investigated the relationship between polymorphisms in two NER genes, XPC (poly (AT) insertion/deletion: PAT-/+) and XPD (Asp312Asn and Lys751Gln), the BER gene XRCC1 (Arg399Gln), and the DSBR gene XRCC3 (Thr241Met) and the risk of developing lung cancer.
A hospital-based case-control study was designed with 516 lung cancer patients and 533 control subjects, matched on ethnicity, age, and gender. Genotypes were determined by PCR-RFLP and the results were analysed using multivariate unconditional logistic regression, adjusting for age, gender and pack-years.
Borderline association was found for XPC and XPD NER genes polymorphisms, while no association was observed for polymorphisms in BER and DSBR genes. XPC PAT+/+ genotype was associated with no statistically significant increased risk among ever smokers (OR = 1.40; 95%CI = 0.94–2.08), squamous cell carcinoma (OR = 1.44; 95%CI = 0.85–2.44), and adenocarcinoma (OR = 1.72; 95%CI = 0.97–3.04). XPD variant genotypes (312Asn/Asn and 751Gln/Gln) presented a not statistically significant risk of developing lung cancer (OR = 1.52; 95%CI = 0.91–2.51; OR = 1.38; 95%CI = 0.85–2.25, respectively), especially among ever smokers (OR = 1.58; 95%CI = 0.96–2.60), heavy smokers (OR = 2.07; 95%CI = 0.74–5.75), and adenocarcinoma (OR = 1.88; 95%CI = 0.97–3.63). On the other hand, individuals homozygous for the XRCC1 399Gln allele presented no risk of developing lung cancer (OR = 0.87; 95%CI = 0.57–1.31) except for individuals carriers of 399Gln/Gln genotype and without family history of cancer (OR = 0.57; 95%CI = 0.33–0.98) and no association was found between XRCC3 Thr241Met polymorphism and lung cancer risk (OR = 0.92; 95%CI = 0.56–1.50), except for the 241Met/Met genotype and squamous cell carcinoma risk (OR = 0.47; 95%CI = 0.23–1.00).
In conclusion, we analysed the association between XPC, XPD, XRCC1, and XRCC3 polymorphisms and the individual susceptibility to develop lung cancer in the Spanish population, specifically with a highly tobacco exposed population. We attempt to contribute to the discovery of which biomarkers of DNA repair capacity are useful for screening this high-risk population for primary preventing and early detection of lung cancer.
Large tumor suppressor (LATS) 1 and 2 are tumor suppressor genes implicated in the regulation of the cell cycle. The methylation statuses of the promoter regions of these genes were studied in Japanese lung cancers. The methylation statuses of the promoter regions of LATS1 and LATS2 were investigated by methylation-specific PCR. The findings were compared to clinicopathological features of lung cancer. Methylation-specific PCR showed that the LATS1 promoter region was hypermethylated in 95 out of 119 (79.8%) lung cancers. The methylation status of LATS1 was significantly associated with squamous histology (p=0.0267) and smoking status (never smoker vs. smoker; p=0.0399). LATS1-ummethylated patients harbored more EGFR mutations (p=0.0143). The LATS2 promoter region was hypermethylated in 160 out of 203 (78.8%) lung cancers. However, the methylation status had no association with the clinicopathological characteristics of the lung cancers cases. Both the LATS1 and LATS2 methylation statuses did not correlate with survival of lung cancer patients. Thus, the EGFR methylation status of the LATS genes has limited value in Japanese lung cancers.
hypermethylation; large tumor suppressor gene; lung cancer
Aberrant methylation in gene promoter regions leads to transcriptional inactivation of cancer-related genes and plays an integral role in tumorigenesis. This alteration has been investigated in lung tumors primarily from smokers, whereas only a few studies involved never-smokers. Here, we applied methylation-specific polymerase chain reaction to compare the frequencies of the methylated promoter of p16 and O6-methylguanine-DNA methyltransferase (MGMT) genes in lung tumors from 122 patients with non-small cell lung cancer, including 81 smokers and 41 never-smokers. Overall, promoter methylation was detected in 52.5% (64 of 122) and 30.3% (37 of 122) of the p16 and MGMT genes, respectively. Furthermore, the frequency of promoter methylation was significantly higher among smokers, compared with never-smokers, for both the p16 [odds ratio (OR) = 3.28; 95% confidence interval (CI) = 1.28-8.39; P = .013] and MGMT (OR = 3.93; 95% CI = 1.27-12.21; P = .018) genes. The trend for a higher promoter methylation frequency of these genes was also observed among female smokers compared with female never-smokers. Our results suggest an association between tobacco smoking and an increased incidence of aberrant promoter methylation of the p16 and MGMT genes in non-small cell lung cancer.
Lung tumors; p16; MGMT; promoter methylation; never-smokers
Drinking water arsenic exposure has been associated with increased bladder cancer susceptibility. Epidemiologic and experimental data suggest a co-carcinogenic effect of arsenic with exposure to DNA damaging agents, such as cigarette smoke. Recent evidence further supports the hypothesis that genetic variation in DNA repair genes can modify the arsenic – cancer relationship, possibly because arsenic impairs DNA repair capacity. We tested this hypothesis in a population-based study of bladder cancer with XRCC3, ERCC2 genotype/haplotype and arsenic exposure data on 549 controls and 342 cases. Individual exposure to arsenic was determined in toenail samples by neutron activation. Gene-environment interaction with arsenic exposure was observed in relation to bladder cancer risk for a variant allele of the double-strand break repair gene XRCC3 T241M (adjusted OR 2.8 (1.1–7.3) comparing to homozygous wild type among those in the top arsenic exposure decile (interaction p-value 0.01). Haplotype analysis confirmed the association of the XRCC3 241. Thus, double-strand break repair genotype may enhance arsenic associated bladder cancer susceptibility in the U.S. population.
DNA repair; bladder cancer; arsenic; polymorphism; interaction
X-ray repair cross-complementing protein 3 (XRCC3) is an essential gene involved in the double-strand break repair pathway. Published evidence has shown controversial results about the relationship between XRCC3 Thr241Met polymorphism and clinical outcomes of non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) patients receiving platinum-based chemotherapy.
A systematic review and meta-analysis was performed to evaluate the predictive value of XRCC3 Thr241Met polymorphism on clinical outcomes of advanced NSCLC receiving platinum-based chemotherapy. Response to chemotherapy, overall survival (OS) and progression-free survival (PFS) were analyzed.
A number of 11 eligible studies were identified according to the inclusion criteria. Carriers of the variant XRCC3 241Met allele were significantly associated with good response to platinum-based chemotherapy (ThrMet/MetMet vs. ThrThr: OR = 1.509, 95% CI: 1.099–2.072, Pheterogeneity = 0.618). The XRCC3 Thr241Met polymorphism was not associated with OS (MetMet vs. ThrThr, HR = 0.939, 95% CI:0.651–1.356, Pheterogeneity = 0.112) or PFS (MetMet vs. ThrThr, HR = 0.960, 95% CI: 0.539–1.710, Pheterogeneity = 0.198). Additionally, no evidence of publication bias was observed.
This systematic review and meta-analysis shows that carriers of the XRCC3 241Met allele are associated with good response to platinum-based chemotherapy in advanced NSCLC, while the XRCC3 Thr241Met polymorphism is not associated with OS or PFS.
Background and aim
The DNA repair gene Ku70, an important member of non-homologous end-joining repair system, is thought to play an important role in the repairing of DNA double strand breaks. It is known that defects in double strand break repair capacity can lead to irreversible genomic instability. However, the polymorphic variants of Ku70, have never been reported about their association with gastric cancer susceptibility.
In this hospital-based case-control study, the associations of Ku70 promoter T-991C (rs5751129), promoter G-57C (rs2267437), promoter A-31G (rs132770), and intron 3 (rs132774) polymorphisms with gastric cancer risk in a Taiwanese population were investigated. In total, 136 patients with gastric cancer and 560 age- and gender-matched healthy controls recruited from the China Medical Hospital in Taiwan were genotyped.
As for Ku70 promoter T-991C, the ORs after adjusted by age and gender of the people carrying TC and CC genotypes were 2.41 (95% CI = 1.53-3.88) and 3.21 (95% CI = 0.96-9.41) respectively, compared to those carrying TT wild-type genotype. The P for trend was significant (P < 0.0001). In the dominant model (TC plus CC versus TT), the association between Ku70 promoter T-991C polymorphism and the risk for gastric cancer was also significant (adjusted OR = 2.48, 95% CI = 1.74-3.92). When stratified by age and gender, the association was restricted to those at the age of 55 or elder of age (TC vs TT: adjusted OR = 2.52, 95% CI = 1.37-4.68, P = 0.0139) and male (TC vs TT: adjusted OR = 2.58, 95% CI = 1.33-4.47, P = 0.0085). As for the other three polymorphisms, there was no difference between both groups in the distributions of their genotype frequencies.
In conclusion, the Ku70 promoter T-991C (rs5751129), but not the Ku70 promoter C-57G (rs2267437), promoter A-31G (rs132770) or intron 3 (rs132774), is associated with gastric cancer susceptibility. This polymorphism may be a novel useful marker for gastric carcinogenesis.
Ku70; Polymorphism; Gastric cancer; Carcinogenesis
Research is being conducted world-wide related to chemoprevention of future lung cancer among smokers. The fact that low doses and dose rates of some sparsely ionizing forms of radiation (e.g., x rays, gamma rays, and beta radiation) stimulate transient natural chemical and biological protection against cancer in high-risk individuals is little known. The cancer preventative properties relate to radiation adaptive response (radiation hormesis) and involve stimulated protective biological signaling (a mild stress response). The biological processes associated with the protective signaling are now better understood and include: increased availability of efficient DNA double-strand break repair (p53-related and in competition with normal apoptosis), stimulated auxiliary apoptosis of aberrant cells (presumed p53-independent), and stimulated protective immune functions. This system of low-dose radiation activated natural protection (ANP) requires an individual-specific threshold level of mild stress and when invoked can efficiently prevent the occurrence of cancers as well as other genomic-instability-associated diseases. In this paper, low, essentially harmless doses of gamma rays spread over an extended period are shown via use of a biological-based, hormetic relative risk (HRR) model to be highly efficient in preventing lung cancer induction by alpha radiation from inhaled plutonium.
chemoprevention; cancer; radiation; sparsely ionizing radiation; hormesis; adaptive response
The MRE11, RAD50, and XRS2 genes of Saccharomyces cerevisiae are involved in the repair of DNA double-strand breaks (DSBs) produced by ionizing radiation and by radiomimetic chemicals such as methyl methanesulfonate (MMS). In these mutants, single-strand DNA degradation in a 5′ to 3′ direction from DSB ends is reduced. Multiple copies of the EXO1 gene, encoding a 5′ to 3′ double-strand DNA exonuclease, were found to suppress the high MMS sensitivity of these mutants. The exo1 single mutant shows weak MMS sensitivity. When an exo1 mutation is combined with an mre11 mutation, both repair of MMS-induced damage and processing of DSBs are more severely reduced than in either single mutant, suggesting that Exo1 and Mre11 function independently in DSB processing. During meiosis, transcription of the EXO1 gene is highly induced. In meiotic cells, the exo1 mutation reduces the processing of DSBs and the frequency of crossing over, but not the frequency of gene conversion. These results suggest that Exo1 functions in the processing of DSB ends and in meiotic crossing over.
Human MRE11 is a key enzyme in DNA double-strand break repair and genome stability. Human MRE11 bears a glycine-arginine-rich (GAR) motif that is conserved among multicellular eukaryotic species. We investigated how this motif influences MRE11 function. Human MRE11 alone or a complex of MRE11, RAD50, and NBS1 (MRN) was methylated in insect cells, suggesting that this modification is conserved during evolution. We demonstrate that PRMT1 interacts with MRE11 but not with the MRN complex, suggesting that MRE11 arginine methylation occurs prior to the binding of NBS1 and RAD50. Moreover, the first six methylated arginines are essential for the regulation of MRE11 DNA binding and nuclease activity. The inhibition of arginine methylation leads to a reduction in MRE11 and RAD51 focus formation on a unique double-strand break in vivo. Furthermore, the MRE11-methylated GAR domain is sufficient for its targeting to DNA damage foci and colocalization with γ-H2AX. These studies highlight an important role for the GAR domain in regulating MRE11 function at the biochemical and cellular levels during DNA double-strand break repair.
Nibrin (NBN or NBS1) and ATM are key factors for DNA Double Strand Break (DSB) signaling and repair. Mutations in NBN or ATM result in Nijmegen Breakage Syndrome and Ataxia telangiectasia. These syndromes share common features such as radiosensitivity, neurological developmental defects and cancer predisposition. However, the functional synergy of Nbn and Atm in different tissues and developmental stages is not yet understood. Here, we show in vivo consequences of conditional inactivation of both genes in neural stem/progenitor cells using Nestin-Cre mice. Genetic inactivation of Atm in the central nervous system of Nbn-deficient mice led to reduced life span and increased DSBs, resulting in increased apoptosis during neural development. Surprisingly, the increase of DSBs and apoptosis was found only in few tissues including cerebellum, ganglionic eminences and lens. In sharp contrast, we showed that apoptosis associated with Nbn deletion was prevented by simultaneous inactivation of Atm in developing retina. Therefore, we propose that Nbn and Atm collaborate to prevent DSB accumulation and apoptosis during development in a tissue- and developmental stage-specific manner.
The process of homologous recombination is a major DNA repair pathway that operates on DNA double-strand breaks, and possibly other kinds of DNA lesions, to promote error-free repair. Central to the process of homologous recombination are the RAD52 group genes (RAD50, RAD51, RAD52, RAD54, RDH54/TID1, RAD55, RAD57, RAD59, MRE11, and XRS2), most of which were identified by their requirement for the repair of ionizing-radiation-induced DNA damage in Saccharomyces cerevisiae. The Rad52 group proteins are highly conserved among eukaryotes, and Rad51, Mre11, and Rad50 are also conserved in prokaryotes and archaea. Recent studies showing defects in homologous recombination and double-strand break repair in several human cancer-prone syndromes have emphasized the importance of this repair pathway in maintaining genome integrity. Although sensitivity to ionizing radiation is a universal feature of rad52 group mutants, the mutants show considerable heterogeneity in different assays for recombinational repair of double-strand breaks and spontaneous mitotic recombination. Herein, I provide an overview of recent biochemical and structural analyses of the Rad52 group proteins and discuss how this information can be incorporated into genetic studies of recombination.