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1.  Prospective Investigation of Body Mass Index, Colorectal Adenoma, and Colorectal Cancer in the Prostate, Lung, Colorectal, and Ovarian Cancer Screening Trial 
Journal of Clinical Oncology  2013;31(19):2450-2459.
Obesity has consistently been linked to an increased risk of colorectal cancer, particularly among men. Whether body mass index (BMI) differentially influences the risk across the stages of colorectal cancer development remains unclear. We evaluated the associations of BMI with colorectal adenoma incidence, adenoma recurrence, and cancer in the context of a large screening trial, in which cases and controls had an equal chance for disease detection.
We prospectively evaluated the association between baseline BMI and the risk of incident distal adenoma (1,213 cases), recurrent adenoma (752 cases), and incident colorectal cancer (966 cases) among men and women, ages 55 to 74 years, randomly assigned to receive flexible sigmoidoscopy screening as part of the Prostate, Lung, Colorectal, and Ovarian Cancer Screening Trial. We calculated odds ratios (ORs) and 95% CIs for adenoma incidence and recurrence, and hazard ratios (HRs) and 95% CIs for colorectal cancer incidence, using multivariable-adjusted models.
Compared with normal-weight men (18.5 to 24.9 kg/m2), obese men (≥ 30 kg/m2) had significantly higher risk of incident adenoma (OR, 1.32; 95% CI, 1.06 to 1.65) and colorectal cancer (HR, 1.48; 95% CI, 1.16 to 1.89) and a borderline increased risk of recurrent adenoma (OR, 1.50; 95% CI, 0.98 to 2.30). No associations were observed for either adenoma or cancer in women.
Data from this large prospective study suggest that obesity is important throughout the natural history of colorectal cancer, at least in men, and colorectal cancer prevention efforts should encourage the achievement and maintenance of a healthy body weight in addition to regular screenings.
PMCID: PMC3691360  PMID: 23715565
2.  Gene-environment interaction involving recently identified colorectal cancer susceptibility loci 
Genome-wide association studies have identified several single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) that are associated with risk of colorectal cancer (CRC). Prior research has evaluated the presence of gene-environment interaction involving the first 10 identified susceptibility loci, but little work has been conducted on interaction involving SNPs at recently identified susceptibility loci, including: rs10911251, rs6691170, rs6687758, rs11903757, rs10936599, rs647161, rs1321311, rs719725, rs1665650, rs3824999, rs7136702, rs11169552, rs59336, rs3217810, rs4925386, and rs2423279.
Data on 9160 cases and 9280 controls from the Genetics and Epidemiology of Colorectal Cancer Consortium (GECCO) and Colon Cancer Family Registry (CCFR) were used to evaluate the presence of interaction involving the above-listed SNPs and sex, body mass index (BMI), alcohol consumption, smoking, aspirin use, post-menopausal hormone (PMH) use, as well as intake of dietary calcium, dietary fiber, dietary folate, red meat, processed meat, fruit, and vegetables. Interaction was evaluated using a fixed-effects meta-analysis of an efficient Empirical Bayes estimator, and permutation was used to account for multiple comparisons.
None of the permutation-adjusted p-values reached statistical significance.
The associations between recently identified genetic susceptibility loci and CRC are not strongly modified by sex, BMI, alcohol, smoking, aspirin, PMH use, and various dietary factors.
Results suggest no evidence of strong gene-environment interactions involving the recently identified 16 susceptibility loci for CRC taken one at a time.
PMCID: PMC4209726  PMID: 24994789
Colorectal Cancer; Gene-Environment Interaction; Polymorphism; Single Nucleotide; Genetic Predisposition to Disease; Diet
3.  Telomere length in white blood cell DNA and lung cancer: a pooled analysis of three prospective cohorts 
Cancer research  2014;74(15):4090-4098.
We investigated the relationship between telomere length and lung cancer in a pooled analysis from three prospective cohort studies: the Prostate, Lung, Colorectal and Ovarian (PLCO) Cancer Screening Trial, conducted among men and women in the United States, and previously published data from the Alpha-Tocopherol, Beta-Carotene Cancer Prevention (ATBC) trial conducted among male smokers in Finland, and the Shanghai Women's Health Study (SWHS), which is comprised primarily of never-smokers. The pooled population included 847 cases and 847 controls matched by study, age, and sex. Leukocyte telomere length was measured by a monochrome multiplex quantitative PCR assay. We used conditional logistic regression models to calculate odds ratios (OR) and their 95% confidence intervals (CI) for the association between telomere length and lung cancer risk, adjusted for age and pack-years of smoking. Longer telomere length was associated with increased lung cancer risk in the pooled analysis (OR(95% CI) by quartile: 1.00; 1.24(0.90–1.71); 1.27(0.91–1.78); and 1.86(1.33–2.62); P-trend=0.000022). Findings were consistent across the three cohorts and strongest for subjects with very long telomere length, i.e., lung cancer risks for telomere length (OR(95% CI)) in the upper half of the fourth quartile were 2.41(1.28–4.52), 2.16(1.11–4.23) and 3.02(1.39–6.58) for the PLCO trial, the ATBC trial, and the SWHS, respectively. In addition, the association persisted among cases diagnosed more than six years after blood collection and was particularly evident for female adenocarcinoma cases. Telomere length in white blood cell DNA may be a biomarker of future increased risk of lung cancer in diverse populations.
PMCID: PMC4119534  PMID: 24853549
Leukocytes; Lung cancer; Prospective; Telomeres
4.  Medical History, Lifestyle, and Occupational Risk Factors for Hairy Cell Leukemia: The InterLymph Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma Subtypes Project 
Little is known about the etiology of hairy cell leukemia (HCL), a rare B-cell lymphoproliferative disorder with marked male predominance. Our aim was to identify key risk factors for HCL.
A pooled analysis of individual-level data for 154 histologically confirmed HCL cases and 8834 controls from five case–control studies, conducted in Europe and Australia, was undertaken. Age-, race and/or ethnicity-, sex-, and study-adjusted odds ratios (OR) and 95% confidence intervals (CI) were estimated using unconditional logistic regression.
The usual patterns for age and sex in HCL were observed, with a median age of 55 years and sex ratio of 3.7 males to females. Cigarette smoking was inversely associated with HCL (OR = 0.51, 95% CI = 0.37 to 0.71) with dose–response relationships observed for duration, frequency, and lifetime cigarette smoking (P trend < .001). In contrast, occupation as a farmer was positively associated with HCL (OR = 2.34, 95% CI = 1.36 to 4.01), with a dose–response relationship observed for duration (OR = 1.82, 95% CI = 0.85 to 3.88 for ≤10 years vs never; and OR = 2.98, 95% CI = 1.50 to 5.93 for >10 years vs never; P trend = .025). Adult height was also positively associated with HCL (OR = 2.69, 95% CI = 1.39 to 5.29 for upper vs lower quartile of height). The observed associations remained consistent in multivariate analysis.
Our observations of an increased risk of HCL from farming exposures and decreased risk from smoking exposures, independent of one another, support a multifactorial origin and an etiological specificity of HCL compared with other non-Hodgkin lymphoma subtypes. The positive association with height is a novel finding that needs replication.
PMCID: PMC4155459  PMID: 25174032
5.  Rationale and Design of the International Lymphoma Epidemiology Consortium (InterLymph) Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma Subtypes Project 
Non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL), the most common hematologic malignancy, consists of numerous subtypes. The etiology of NHL is incompletely understood, and increasing evidence suggests that risk factors may vary by NHL subtype. However, small numbers of cases have made investigation of subtype-specific risks challenging. The International Lymphoma Epidemiology Consortium therefore undertook the NHL Subtypes Project, an international collaborative effort to investigate the etiologies of NHL subtypes. This article describes in detail the project rationale and design.
We pooled individual-level data from 20 case-control studies (17471 NHL cases, 23096 controls) from North America, Europe, and Australia. Centralized data harmonization and analysis ensured standardized definitions and approaches, with rigorous quality control.
The pooled study population included 11 specified NHL subtypes with more than 100 cases: diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (N = 4667), follicular lymphoma (N = 3530), chronic lymphocytic leukemia/small lymphocytic lymphoma (N = 2440), marginal zone lymphoma (N = 1052), peripheral T-cell lymphoma (N = 584), mantle cell lymphoma (N = 557), lymphoplasmacytic lymphoma/Waldenström macroglobulinemia (N = 374), mycosis fungoides/Sézary syndrome (N = 324), Burkitt/Burkitt-like lymphoma/leukemia (N = 295), hairy cell leukemia (N = 154), and acute lymphoblastic leukemia/lymphoma (N = 152). Associations with medical history, family history, lifestyle factors, and occupation for each of these 11 subtypes are presented in separate articles in this issue, with a final article quantitatively comparing risk factor patterns among subtypes.
The International Lymphoma Epidemiology Consortium NHL Subtypes Project provides the largest and most comprehensive investigation of potential risk factors for a broad range of common and rare NHL subtypes to date. The analyses contribute to our understanding of the multifactorial nature of NHL subtype etiologies, motivate hypothesis-driven prospective investigations, provide clues for prevention, and exemplify the benefits of international consortial collaboration in cancer epidemiology.
PMCID: PMC4155460  PMID: 25174022
6.  Medical History, Lifestyle, Family History, and Occupational Risk Factors for Mantle Cell Lymphoma: The InterLymph Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma Subtypes Project 
The etiology of mantle cell lymphoma (MCL), a distinctive subtype accounting for 2%–10% of all non-Hodgkin lymphoma, is not known.
We investigated associations with self-reported medical history, lifestyle, family history, and occupational risk factors in a pooled analysis of 557 patients with MCL and 13766 controls from 13 case–control studies in Europe, North America, and Australia. Odds ratios (ORs) and 95% confidence intervals (CIs) associated with each exposure were examined using multivariate logistic regression models.
The median age of the MCL patients was 62 years and 76% were men. Risk of MCL was inversely associated with history of hay fever (OR = 0.63, 95% CI = 0.48 to 0.82), and the association was independent of other atopic diseases and allergies. A hematological malignancy among first-degree relatives was associated with a twofold increased risk of MCL (OR = 1.99, 95% CI = 1.39 to 2.84), which was stronger in men (OR = 2.21, 95% CI = 1.44 to 3.38) than women (OR = 1.61, 95% CI = 0.82 to 3.19). A modestly increased risk of MCL was also observed in association with ever having lived on a farm (OR = 1.40, 95% CI = 1.03 to 1.90). Unlike some other non-Hodgkin lymphoma subtypes, MCL risk was not statistically significantly associated with autoimmune disorders, tobacco smoking, alcohol intake, body mass index, or ultraviolet radiation.
The novel observations of a possible role for atopy and allergy and farm life in risk of MCL, together with confirmatory evidence of a familial link, suggest a multifactorial etiology of immune-related environmental exposures and genetic susceptibility. These findings provide guidance for future research in MCL etiology.
PMCID: PMC4155462  PMID: 25174028
7.  Medical History, Lifestyle, Family History, and Occupational Risk Factors for Adult Acute Lymphocytic Leukemia: The InterLymph Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma Subtypes Project 
Acute lymphoblastic leukemia/lymphoma (ALL) in adults is a rare malignancy with a poor clinical outcome, and few reported etiologic risk factors.
We performed an exploratory pooled study of 152 ALL cases and 23096 controls from 16 case–control studies to investigate the role of medical history, lifestyle, family history, and occupational risk factors and risk of ALL. Age- race/ethnicity-, sex-, and study-adjusted odds ratios (ORs) and 95% confidence intervals (CIs) were estimated using logistic regression.
An increased risk of ALL was found in those with a family history of a hematological malignancy (OR = 2.6, 95% CI = 1.22 to 5.54) and in leather (OR = 3.91, 95% CI = 1.35 to 11.35) and sewing/embroidery workers (OR = 2.92, 95% CI = 1.00 to 8.49). Consumers of alcohol had an increased risk of B-cell ALL (OR = 2.87, 95% CI = 1.18 to 6.95).
The small number of statistically significant risk factors identified out of the 112 variables examined could be chance findings and will require further replication to assess their role in the etiology of adult ALL.
PMCID: PMC4155464  PMID: 25174033
8.  Etiologic Heterogeneity Among Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma Subtypes: The InterLymph Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma Subtypes Project 
Morton, Lindsay M. | Slager, Susan L. | Cerhan, James R. | Wang, Sophia S. | Vajdic, Claire M. | Skibola, Christine F. | Bracci, Paige M. | de Sanjosé, Silvia | Smedby, Karin E. | Chiu, Brian C. H. | Zhang, Yawei | Mbulaiteye, Sam M. | Monnereau, Alain | Turner, Jennifer J. | Clavel, Jacqueline | Adami, Hans-Olov | Chang, Ellen T. | Glimelius, Bengt | Hjalgrim, Henrik | Melbye, Mads | Crosignani, Paolo | di Lollo, Simonetta | Miligi, Lucia | Nanni, Oriana | Ramazzotti, Valerio | Rodella, Stefania | Costantini, Adele Seniori | Stagnaro, Emanuele | Tumino, Rosario | Vindigni, Carla | Vineis, Paolo | Becker, Nikolaus | Benavente, Yolanda | Boffetta, Paolo | Brennan, Paul | Cocco, Pierluigi | Foretova, Lenka | Maynadié, Marc | Nieters, Alexandra | Staines, Anthony | Colt, Joanne S. | Cozen, Wendy | Davis, Scott | de Roos, Anneclaire J. | Hartge, Patricia | Rothman, Nathaniel | Severson, Richard K. | Holly, Elizabeth A. | Call, Timothy G. | Feldman, Andrew L. | Habermann, Thomas M. | Liebow, Mark | Blair, Aaron | Cantor, Kenneth P. | Kane, Eleanor V. | Lightfoot, Tracy | Roman, Eve | Smith, Alex | Brooks-Wilson, Angela | Connors, Joseph M. | Gascoyne, Randy D. | Spinelli, John J. | Armstrong, Bruce K. | Kricker, Anne | Holford, Theodore R. | Lan, Qing | Zheng, Tongzhang | Orsi, Laurent | Dal Maso, Luigino | Franceschi, Silvia | La Vecchia, Carlo | Negri, Eva | Serraino, Diego | Bernstein, Leslie | Levine, Alexandra | Friedberg, Jonathan W. | Kelly, Jennifer L. | Berndt, Sonja I. | Birmann, Brenda M. | Clarke, Christina A. | Flowers, Christopher R. | Foran, James M. | Kadin, Marshall E. | Paltiel, Ora | Weisenburger, Dennis D. | Linet, Martha S. | Sampson, Joshua N.
Non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL) comprises biologically and clinically heterogeneous subtypes. Previously, study size has limited the ability to compare and contrast the risk factor profiles among these heterogeneous subtypes.
We pooled individual-level data from 17 471 NHL cases and 23 096 controls in 20 case–control studies from the International Lymphoma Epidemiology Consortium (InterLymph). We estimated the associations, measured as odds ratios, between each of 11 NHL subtypes and self-reported medical history, family history of hematologic malignancy, lifestyle factors, and occupation. We then assessed the heterogeneity of associations by evaluating the variability (Q value) of the estimated odds ratios for a given exposure among subtypes. Finally, we organized the subtypes into a hierarchical tree to identify groups that had similar risk factor profiles. Statistical significance of tree partitions was estimated by permutation-based P values (P NODE).
Risks differed statistically significantly among NHL subtypes for medical history factors (autoimmune diseases, hepatitis C virus seropositivity, eczema, and blood transfusion), family history of leukemia and multiple myeloma, alcohol consumption, cigarette smoking, and certain occupations, whereas generally homogeneous risks among subtypes were observed for family history of NHL, recreational sun exposure, hay fever, allergy, and socioeconomic status. Overall, the greatest difference in risk factors occurred between T-cell and B-cell lymphomas (P NODE < 1.0×10−4), with increased risks generally restricted to T-cell lymphomas for eczema, T-cell-activating autoimmune diseases, family history of multiple myeloma, and occupation as a painter. We further observed substantial heterogeneity among B-cell lymphomas (P NODE < 1.0×10−4). Increased risks for B-cell-activating autoimmune disease and hepatitis C virus seropositivity and decreased risks for alcohol consumption and occupation as a teacher generally were restricted to marginal zone lymphoma, Burkitt/Burkitt-like lymphoma/leukemia, diffuse large B-cell lymphoma, and/or lymphoplasmacytic lymphoma/Waldenström macroglobulinemia.
Using a novel approach to investigate etiologic heterogeneity among NHL subtypes, we identified risk factors that were common among subtypes as well as risk factors that appeared to be distinct among individual or a few subtypes, suggesting both subtype-specific and shared underlying mechanisms. Further research is needed to test putative mechanisms, investigate other risk factors (eg, other infections, environmental exposures, and diet), and evaluate potential joint effects with genetic susceptibility.
PMCID: PMC4155467  PMID: 25174034
9.  A genome-wide association study of marginal zone lymphoma shows association to the HLA region 
Vijai, Joseph | Wang, Zhaoming | Berndt, Sonja I | Skibola, Christine F | Slager, Susan L | de Sanjose, Silvia | Melbye, Mads | Glimelius, Bengt | Bracci, Paige M | Conde, Lucia | Birmann, Brenda M | Wang, Sophia S | Brooks-Wilson, Angela R | Lan, Qing | de Bakker, Paul I W | Vermeulen, Roel C H | Portlock, Carol | Ansell, Stephen M | Link, Brian K | Riby, Jacques | North, Kari E | Gu, Jian | Hjalgrim, Henrik | Cozen, Wendy | Becker, Nikolaus | Teras, Lauren R | Spinelli, John J | Turner, Jenny | Zhang, Yawei | Purdue, Mark P | Giles, Graham G | Kelly, Rachel S | Zeleniuch-Jacquotte, Anne | Ennas, Maria Grazia | Monnereau, Alain | Bertrand, Kimberly A | Albanes, Demetrius | Lightfoot, Tracy | Yeager, Meredith | Chung, Charles C | Burdett, Laurie | Hutchinson, Amy | Lawrence, Charles | Montalvan, Rebecca | Liang, Liming | Huang, Jinyan | Ma, Baoshan | Villano, Danylo J | Maria, Ann | Corines, Marina | Thomas, Tinu | Novak, Anne J | Dogan, Ahmet | Liebow, Mark | Thompson, Carrie A | Witzig, Thomas E | Habermann, Thomas M | Weiner, George J | Smith, Martyn T | Holly, Elizabeth A | Jackson, Rebecca D | Tinker, Lesley F | Ye, Yuanqing | Adami, Hans-Olov | Smedby, Karin E | De Roos, Anneclaire J | Hartge, Patricia | Morton, Lindsay M | Severson, Richard K | Benavente, Yolanda | Boffetta, Paolo | Brennan, Paul | Foretova, Lenka | Maynadie, Marc | McKay, James | Staines, Anthony | Diver, W Ryan | Vajdic, Claire M | Armstrong, Bruce K | Kricker, Anne | Zheng, Tongzhang | Holford, Theodore R | Severi, Gianluca | Vineis, Paolo | Ferri, Giovanni M | Ricco, Rosalia | Miligi, Lucia | Clavel, Jacqueline | Giovannucci, Edward | Kraft, Peter | Virtamo, Jarmo | Smith, Alex | Kane, Eleanor | Roman, Eve | Chiu, Brian C H | Fraumeni, Joseph F | Wu, Xifeng | Cerhan, James R | Offit, Kenneth | Chanock, Stephen J | Rothman, Nathaniel | Nieters, Alexandra
Nature communications  2015;6:5751.
Marginal zone lymphoma (MZL) is the third most common subtype of B-cell non-Hodgkin lymphoma. Here we perform a two-stage GWAS of 1,281 MZL cases and 7,127 controls of European ancestry and identify two independent loci near BTNL2 (rs9461741, P=3.95×10−15) and HLA-B (rs2922994, P=2.43×10−9) in the HLA region significantly associated with MZL risk. This is the first evidence that genetic variation in the major histocompatibility complex influences MZL susceptibility.
PMCID: PMC4287989  PMID: 25569183
10.  Genetic determinants of telomere length and risk of common cancers: a Mendelian randomization study 
Human Molecular Genetics  2015;24(18):5356-5366.
Epidemiological studies have reported inconsistent associations between telomere length (TL) and risk for various cancers. These inconsistencies are likely attributable, in part, to biases that arise due to post-diagnostic and post-treatment TL measurement. To avoid such biases, we used a Mendelian randomization approach and estimated associations between nine TL-associated SNPs and risk for five common cancer types (breast, lung, colorectal, ovarian and prostate cancer, including subtypes) using data on 51 725 cases and 62 035 controls. We then used an inverse-variance weighted average of the SNP-specific associations to estimate the association between a genetic score representing long TL and cancer risk. The long TL genetic score was significantly associated with increased risk of lung adenocarcinoma (P = 6.3 × 10−15), even after exclusion of a SNP residing in a known lung cancer susceptibility region (TERT-CLPTM1L) P = 6.6 × 10−6). Under Mendelian randomization assumptions, the association estimate [odds ratio (OR) = 2.78] is interpreted as the OR for lung adenocarcinoma corresponding to a 1000 bp increase in TL. The weighted TL SNP score was not associated with other cancer types or subtypes. Our finding that genetic determinants of long TL increase lung adenocarcinoma risk avoids issues with reverse causality and residual confounding that arise in observational studies of TL and disease risk. Under Mendelian randomization assumptions, our finding suggests that longer TL increases lung adenocarcinoma risk. However, caution regarding this causal interpretation is warranted in light of the potential issue of pleiotropy, and a more general interpretation is that SNPs influencing telomere biology are also implicated in lung adenocarcinoma risk.
PMCID: PMC4550826  PMID: 26138067
11.  Methodological Considerations in Estimation of Phenotype Heritability Using Genome-Wide SNP Data, Illustrated by an Analysis of the Heritability of Height in a Large Sample of African Ancestry Adults 
PLoS ONE  2015;10(6):e0131106.
Height has an extremely polygenic pattern of inheritance. Genome-wide association studies (GWAS) have revealed hundreds of common variants that are associated with human height at genome-wide levels of significance. However, only a small fraction of phenotypic variation can be explained by the aggregate of these common variants. In a large study of African-American men and women (n = 14,419), we genotyped and analyzed 966,578 autosomal SNPs across the entire genome using a linear mixed model variance components approach implemented in the program GCTA (Yang et al Nat Genet 2010), and estimated an additive heritability of 44.7% (se: 3.7%) for this phenotype in a sample of evidently unrelated individuals. While this estimated value is similar to that given by Yang et al in their analyses, we remain concerned about two related issues: (1) whether in the complete absence of hidden relatedness, variance components methods have adequate power to estimate heritability when a very large number of SNPs are used in the analysis; and (2) whether estimation of heritability may be biased, in real studies, by low levels of residual hidden relatedness. We addressed the first question in a semi-analytic fashion by directly simulating the distribution of the score statistic for a test of zero heritability with and without low levels of relatedness. The second question was addressed by a very careful comparison of the behavior of estimated heritability for both observed (self-reported) height and simulated phenotypes compared to imputation R2 as a function of the number of SNPs used in the analysis. These simulations help to address the important question about whether today's GWAS SNPs will remain useful for imputing causal variants that are discovered using very large sample sizes in future studies of height, or whether the causal variants themselves will need to be genotyped de novo in order to build a prediction model that ultimately captures a large fraction of the variability of height, and by implication other complex phenotypes. Our overall conclusions are that when study sizes are quite large (5,000 or so) the additive heritability estimate for height is not apparently biased upwards using the linear mixed model; however there is evidence in our simulation that a very large number of causal variants (many thousands) each with very small effect on phenotypic variance will need to be discovered to fill the gap between the heritability explained by known versus unknown causal variants. We conclude that today's GWAS data will remain useful in the future for causal variant prediction, but that finding the causal variants that need to be predicted may be extremely laborious.
PMCID: PMC4488332  PMID: 26125186
12.  Dietary iron, iron homeostatic gene polymorphisms and the risk of advanced colorectal adenoma and cancer 
Carcinogenesis  2014;35(6):1276-1283.
Dietary iron intake and variation in iron homeostasis genes may affect colorectal neoplasia risk. This study examines the interaction of dietary iron intake and genetic variation in iron homeostatic genes on the outcomes of colorectal adenoma and colorectal cancer.
Dietary iron intake and variation in iron homeostasis genes may affect colorectal neoplasia risk. We conducted two nested case–control studies within the Prostate, Lung, Colorectal and Ovarian Cancer Screening Trial: one of advanced colorectal adenoma (1205 cases; 1387 controls) and one of colorectal cancer (370 cases; 401 controls). Iron intake was estimated with a food frequency questionnaire and genotyping was performed for 21 genes. Unconditional logistic regression was used to estimate odds ratio (OR) and 95% confidence intervals (95% CIs) for colorectal neoplasia risk within quartiles of intake. Several single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) modified the association between iron intake and the risk of adenoma or cancer. Dietary iron was positively associated with colorectal adenoma among three SNPs of HEPHL1, including carriers of the AA genotype at rs7946162 (ORQ4– Q1 = 2.22, 95% CI 1.15–4.27, P trend = 0.03; P interaction = 0.10), the TT genotype at rs2460063 (ORQ4– Q1 = 2.39, 95% CI 1.26–4.54, P trend = 0.02; P interaction = 0.04) and the GG genotype at rs7127348 (ORQ4– Q1 = 2.40, 95% CI 1.23–4.67, P trend = 0.02; P interaction = 0.09). Heme iron was positively associated with colorectal cancer among those with GG genotypes for ACO1 rs10970985 (ORQ4– Q 1 = 2.45, 95% CI 3.40–8.06, P trend = 0.004; P interaction = 0.05). However, none of the associations were statistically significant after adjustment for multiple comparisons. Future studies should target the specific genes and SNPs for which the association was significant prior to multiple comparison correction.
PMCID: PMC4043236  PMID: 24536049
13.  Prostate Cancer (PCa) Risk Variants and Risk of Fatal PCa in the National Cancer Institute Breast and Prostate Cancer Cohort Consortium 
European urology  2014;65(6):1069-1075.
Screening and diagnosis of prostate cancer (PCa) is hampered by an inability to predict who has the potential to develop fatal disease and who has indolent cancer. Studies have identified multiple genetic risk loci for PCa incidence, but it is unknown whether they could be used as biomarkers for PCa-specific mortality (PCSM).
To examine the association of 47 established PCa risk single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) with PCSM.
Design, setting, and participants
We included 10 487 men who had PCa and 11 024 controls, with a median follow-up of 8.3 yr, during which 1053 PCa deaths occurred.
Outcome measurements and statistical analysis
The main outcome was PCSM. The risk allele was defined as the allele associated with an increased risk for PCa in the literature. We used Cox proportional hazards regression to calculate the hazard ratios of each SNP with time to progression to PCSM after diagnosis. We also used logistic regression to calculate odds ratios for each risk SNP, comparing fatal PCa cases to controls.
Results and limitations
Among the cases, we found that 8 of the 47 SNPs were significantly associated (p < 0.05) with time to PCSM. The risk allele of rs11672691 (intergenic) was associated with an increased risk for PCSM, while 7 SNPs had risk alleles inversely associated (rs13385191 [C2orf43], rs17021918 [PDLIM5], rs10486567 [JAZF1], rs6465657 [LMTK2], rs7127900 (intergenic), rs2735839 [KLK3], rs10993994 [MSMB], rs13385191 [C2orf43]). In the case-control analysis, 22 SNPs were associated (p < 0.05) with the risk of fatal PCa, but most did not differentiate between fatal and nonfatal PCa. Rs11672691 and rs10993994 were associated with both fatal and nonfatal PCa, while rs6465657, rs7127900, rs2735839, and rs13385191 were associated with nonfatal PCa only.
Eight established risk loci were associated with progression to PCSM after diagnosis. Twenty-two SNPs were associated with fatal PCa incidence, but most did not differentiate between fatal and nonfatal PCa. The relatively small magnitudes of the associations do not translate well into risk prediction, but these findings merit further follow-up, because they may yield important clues about the complex biology of fatal PCa. Patient summary: In this report, we assessed whether established PCa risk variants could predict PCSM. We found eight risk variants associated with PCSM: One predicted an increased risk of PCSM, while seven were associated with decreased risk. Larger studies that focus on fatal PCa are needed to identify more markers that could aid prediction.
PMCID: PMC4006298  PMID: 24411283
Prostate cancer; Risk single nucleotide polymorphisms; Prostate cancer mortality; Genetic epidemiology
14.  Insulin-like Growth Factor Pathway Genetic Polymorphisms, Circulating IGF1 and IGFBP3, and Prostate Cancer Survival 
The insulin-like growth factor (IGF) signaling pathway has been implicated in prostate cancer (PCa) initiation, but its role in progression remains unknown.
Among 5887 PCa patients (704 PCa deaths) of European ancestry from seven cohorts in the National Cancer Institute Breast and Prostate Cancer Cohort Consortium, we conducted Cox kernel machine pathway analysis to evaluate whether 530 tagging single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in 26 IGF pathway-related genes were collectively associated with PCa mortality. We also conducted SNP-specific analysis using stratified Cox models adjusting for multiple testing. In 2424 patients (313 PCa deaths), we evaluated the association of prediagnostic circulating IGF1 and IGFBP3 levels and PCa mortality. All statistical tests were two-sided.
The IGF signaling pathway was associated with PCa mortality (P = .03), and IGF2-AS and SSTR2 were the main contributors (both P = .04). In SNP-specific analysis, 36 SNPs were associated with PCa mortality with P trend less than .05, but only three SNPs in the IGF2-AS remained statistically significant after gene-based corrections. Two were in linkage disequilibrium (r 2 = 1 for rs1004446 and rs3741211), whereas the third, rs4366464, was independent (r 2 = 0.03). The hazard ratios (HRs) per each additional risk allele were 1.19 (95% confidence interval [CI] = 1.06 to 1.34; P trend = .003) for rs3741211 and 1.44 (95% CI = 1.20 to 1.73; P trend < .001) for rs4366464. rs4366464 remained statistically significant after correction for all SNPs (P trend.corr = .04). Prediagnostic IGF1 (HRhighest vs lowest quartile = 0.71; 95% CI = 0.48 to 1.04) and IGFBP3 (HR = 0.93; 95% CI = 0.65 to 1.34) levels were not associated with PCa mortality.
The IGF signaling pathway, primarily IGF2-AS and SSTR2 genes, may be important in PCa survival.
PMCID: PMC4081624  PMID: 24824313
15.  Leveraging population admixture to explain missing heritability of complex traits 
Nature genetics  2014;46(12):1356-1362.
Despite recent progress on estimating the heritability explained by genotyped SNPs (hg2), a large gap between hg2 and estimates of total narrow-sense heritability (h2) remains. Explanations for this gap include rare variants, or upward bias in family-based estimates of h2 due to shared environment or epistasis. We estimate h2 from unrelated individuals in admixed populations by first estimating the heritability explained by local ancestry (hγ2). We show that hγ2 = 2FSTCθ(1−θ)h2, where FSTC measures frequency differences between populations at causal loci and θ is the genome-wide ancestry proportion. Our approach is not susceptible to biases caused by epistasis or shared environment. We examined 21,497 African Americans from three cohorts, analyzing 13 phenotypes. For height and BMI, we obtained h2 estimates of 0.55 ± 0.09 and 0.23 ± 0.06, respectively, which are larger than estimates of hg2 in these and other data, but smaller than family-based estimates of h2.
PMCID: PMC4244251  PMID: 25383972
16.  Pleiotropic effects of genetic risk variants for other cancers on colorectal cancer risk: PAGE, GECCO, and CCFR Consortia 
Gut  2013;63(5):800-807.
Genome-wide association studies (GWAS) have identified a large number of single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) associated with a wide array of cancer sites. Several of these variants demonstrate associations with multiple cancers, suggesting pleiotropic effects and shared biological mechanisms across some cancers. We hypothesized that SNPs previously associated with other cancers may additionally be associated with colorectal cancer. In a large-scale study, we examined 171 SNPs previously associated with 18 different cancers for their associations with colorectal cancer.
We examined 13,338 colorectal cancer cases and 40,967 controls from three consortia: Population Architecture using Genetics and Epidemiology (PAGE), Genetic Epidemiology of Colorectal Cancer (GECCO), and the Colon Cancer Family Registry (CCFR). Study-specific logistic regression results, adjusted for age, sex, principal components of genetic ancestry, and/or study specific factors (as relevant) were combined using fixed-effect meta-analyses to evaluate the association between each SNP and colorectal cancer risk. A Bonferroni-corrected p-value of 2.92×10−4 was used to determine statistical significance of the associations.
Two correlated SNPs— rs10090154 and rs4242382—in Region 1 of chromosome 8q24, a prostate cancer susceptibility region, demonstrated statistically significant associations with colorectal cancer risk. The most significant association was observed with rs4242382 (meta-analysis OR=1.12; 95% CI: 1.07–1.18; P=1.74×10−5), which also demonstrated similar associations across racial/ethnic populations and anatomical sub-sites.
This is the first study to clearly demonstrate Region 1 of chromosome 8q24 as a susceptibility locus for colorectal cancer, thus adding colorectal cancer to the list of cancer sites linked to this particular multi-cancer risk region at 8q24.
PMCID: PMC3918490  PMID: 23935004
colorectal cancer; pleiotropy; genome-wide association study; single nucleotide polymorphism
17.  Insulin-like Growth Factor Pathway Genetic Polymorphisms, Circulating IGF1 and IGFBP3, and Prostate Cancer Survival 
The insulin-like growth factor (IGF) signaling pathway has been implicated in prostate cancer (PCa) initiation, but its role in progression remains unknown.
Among 5887 PCa patients (704 PCa deaths) of European ancestry from seven cohorts in the National Cancer Institute Breast and Prostate Cancer Cohort Consortium, we conducted Cox kernel machine pathway analysis to evaluate whether 530 tagging single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in 26 IGF pathway-related genes were collectively associated with PCa mortality. We also conducted SNP-specific analysis using stratified Cox models adjusting for multiple testing. In 2424 patients (313 PCa deaths), we evaluated the association of prediagnostic circulating IGF1 and IGFBP3 levels and PCa mortality. All statistical tests were two-sided.
The IGF signaling pathway was associated with PCa mortality (P = .03), and IGF2-AS and SSTR2 were the main contributors (both P = .04). In SNP-specific analysis, 36 SNPs were associated with PCa mortality with P trend less than .05, but only three SNPs in the IGF2-AS remained statistically significant after gene-based corrections. Two were in linkage disequilibrium (r 2 = 1 for rs1004446 and rs3741211), whereas the third, rs4366464, was independent (r 2 = 0.03). The hazard ratios (HRs) per each additional risk allele were 1.19 (95% confidence interval [CI] = 1.06 to 1.34; P trend = .003) for rs3741211 and 1.44 (95% CI = 1.20 to 1.73; P trend < .001) for rs4366464. rs4366464 remained statistically significant after correction for all SNPs (P trend.corr = .04). Prediagnostic IGF1 (HRhighest vs lowest quartile = 0.71; 95% CI = 0.48 to 1.04) and IGFBP3 (HR = 0.93; 95% CI = 0.65 to 1.34) levels were not associated with PCa mortality.
The IGF signaling pathway, primarily IGF2-AS and SSTR2 genes, may be important in PCa survival.
PMCID: PMC4111284
18.  Genome-wide association study identifies multiple susceptibility loci for diffuse large B-cell lymphoma 
Cerhan, James R | Berndt, Sonja I | Vijai, Joseph | Ghesquières, Hervé | McKay, James | Wang, Sophia S | Wang, Zhaoming | Yeager, Meredith | Conde, Lucia | de Bakker, Paul I W | Nieters, Alexandra | Cox, David | Burdett, Laurie | Monnereau, Alain | Flowers, Christopher R | De Roos, Anneclaire J | Brooks-Wilson, Angela R | Lan, Qing | Severi, Gianluca | Melbye, Mads | Gu, Jian | Jackson, Rebecca D | Kane, Eleanor | Teras, Lauren R | Purdue, Mark P | Vajdic, Claire M | Spinelli, John J | Giles, Graham G | Albanes, Demetrius | Kelly, Rachel S | Zucca, Mariagrazia | Bertrand, Kimberly A | Zeleniuch-Jacquotte, Anne | Lawrence, Charles | Hutchinson, Amy | Zhi, Degui | Habermann, Thomas M | Link, Brian K | Novak, Anne J | Dogan, Ahmet | Asmann, Yan W | Liebow, Mark | Thompson, Carrie A | Ansell, Stephen M | Witzig, Thomas E | Weiner, George J | Veron, Amelie S | Zelenika, Diana | Tilly, Hervé | Haioun, Corinne | Molina, Thierry Jo | Hjalgrim, Henrik | Glimelius, Bengt | Adami, Hans-Olov | Bracci, Paige M | Riby, Jacques | Smith, Martyn T | Holly, Elizabeth A | Cozen, Wendy | Hartge, Patricia | Morton, Lindsay M | Severson, Richard K | Tinker, Lesley F | North, Kari E | Becker, Nikolaus | Benavente, Yolanda | Boffetta, Paolo | Brennan, Paul | Foretova, Lenka | Maynadie, Marc | Staines, Anthony | Lightfoot, Tracy | Crouch, Simon | Smith, Alex | Roman, Eve | Diver, W Ryan | Offit, Kenneth | Zelenetz, Andrew | Klein, Robert J | Villano, Danylo J | Zheng, Tongzhang | Zhang, Yawei | Holford, Theodore R | Kricker, Anne | Turner, Jenny | Southey, Melissa C | Clavel, Jacqueline | Virtamo, Jarmo | Weinstein, Stephanie | Riboli, Elio | Vineis, Paolo | Kaaks, Rudolph | Trichopoulos, Dimitrios | Vermeulen, Roel C H | Boeing, Heiner | Tjonneland, Anne | Angelucci, Emanuele | Di Lollo, Simonetta | Rais, Marco | Birmann, Brenda M | Laden, Francine | Giovannucci, Edward | Kraft, Peter | Huang, Jinyan | Ma, Baoshan | Ye, Yuanqing | Chiu, Brian C H | Sampson, Joshua | Liang, Liming | Park, Ju-Hyun | Chung, Charles C | Weisenburger, Dennis D | Chatterjee, Nilanjan | Fraumeni, Joseph F | Slager, Susan L | Wu, Xifeng | de Sanjose, Silvia | Smedby, Karin E | Salles, Gilles | Skibola, Christine F | Rothman, Nathaniel | Chanock, Stephen J
Nature genetics  2014;46(11):1233-1238.
PMCID: PMC4213349  PMID: 25261932
19.  A meta-analysis of 87,040 individuals identifies 23 new susceptibility loci for prostate cancer 
Al Olama, Ali Amin | Kote-Jarai, Zsofia | Berndt, Sonja I. | Conti, David V. | Schumacher, Fredrick | Han, Ying | Benlloch, Sara | Hazelett, Dennis J. | Wang, Zhaoming | Saunders, Ed | Leongamornlert, Daniel | Lindstrom, Sara | Jugurnauth-Little, Sara | Dadaev, Tokhir | Tymrakiewicz, Malgorzata | Stram, Daniel O. | Rand, Kristin | Wan, Peggy | Stram, Alex | Sheng, Xin | Pooler, Loreall C. | Park, Karen | Xia, Lucy | Tyrer, Jonathan | Kolonel, Laurence N. | Le Marchand, Loic | Hoover, Robert N. | Machiela, Mitchell J. | Yeager, Merideth | Burdette, Laurie | Chung, Charles C. | Hutchinson, Amy | Yu, Kai | Goh, Chee | Ahmed, Mahbubl | Govindasami, Koveela | Guy, Michelle | Tammela, Teuvo L.J. | Auvinen, Anssi | Wahlfors, Tiina | Schleutker, Johanna | Visakorpi, Tapio | Leinonen, Katri A. | Xu, Jianfeng | Aly, Markus | Donovan, Jenny | Travis, Ruth C. | Key, Tim J. | Siddiq, Afshan | Canzian, Federico | Khaw, Kay-Tee | Takahashi, Atsushi | Kubo, Michiaki | Pharoah, Paul | Pashayan, Nora | Weischer, Maren | Nordestgaard, Borge G. | Nielsen, Sune F. | Klarskov, Peter | Røder, Martin Andreas | Iversen, Peter | Thibodeau, Stephen N. | McDonnell, Shannon K | Schaid, Daniel J | Stanford, Janet L. | Kolb, Suzanne | Holt, Sarah | Knudsen, Beatrice | Coll, Antonio Hurtado | Gapstur, Susan M. | Diver, W. Ryan | Stevens, Victoria L. | Maier, Christiane | Luedeke, Manuel | Herkommer, Kathleen | Rinckleb, Antje E. | Strom, Sara S. | Pettaway, Curtis | Yeboah, Edward D. | Tettey, Yao | Biritwum, Richard B. | Adjei, Andrew A. | Tay, Evelyn | Truelove, Ann | Niwa, Shelley | Chokkalingam, Anand P. | Cannon-Albright, Lisa | Cybulski, Cezary | Wokołorczyk, Dominika | Kluźniak, Wojciech | Park, Jong | Sellers, Thomas | Lin, Hui-Yi | Isaacs, William B. | Partin, Alan W. | Brenner, Hermann | Dieffenbach, Aida Karina | Stegmaier, Christa | Chen, Constance | Giovannucci, Edward L. | Ma, Jing | Stampfer, Meir | Penney, Kathryn L. | Mucci, Lorelei | John, Esther M. | Ingles, Sue A. | Kittles, Rick A. | Murphy, Adam B. | Pandha, Hardev | Michael, Agnieszka | Kierzek, Andrzej M. | Blot, William | Signorello, Lisa B. | Zheng, Wei | Albanes, Demetrius | Virtamo, Jarmo | Weinstein, Stephanie | Nemesure, Barbara | Carpten, John | Leske, Cristina | Wu, Suh-Yuh | Hennis, Anselm | Kibel, Adam S. | Rybicki, Benjamin A. | Neslund-Dudas, Christine | Hsing, Ann W. | Chu, Lisa | Goodman, Phyllis J. | Klein, Eric A | Zheng, S. Lilly | Batra, Jyotsna | Clements, Judith | Spurdle, Amanda | Teixeira, Manuel R. | Paulo, Paula | Maia, Sofia | Slavov, Chavdar | Kaneva, Radka | Mitev, Vanio | Witte, John S. | Casey, Graham | Gillanders, Elizabeth M. | Seminara, Daniella | Riboli, Elio | Hamdy, Freddie C. | Coetzee, Gerhard A. | Li, Qiyuan | Freedman, Matthew L. | Hunter, David J. | Muir, Kenneth | Gronberg, Henrik | Neal, David E. | Southey, Melissa | Giles, Graham G. | Severi, Gianluca | Cook, Michael B. | Nakagawa, Hidewaki | Wiklund, Fredrik | Kraft, Peter | Chanock, Stephen J. | Henderson, Brian E. | Easton, Douglas F. | Eeles, Rosalind A. | Haiman, Christopher A.
Nature genetics  2014;46(10):1103-1109.
Genome-wide association studies (GWAS) have identified 76 variants associated with prostate cancer risk predominantly in populations of European ancestry. To identify additional susceptibility loci for this common cancer, we conducted a meta-analysis of >10 million SNPs in 43,303prostate cancer cases and 43,737 controls from studies in populations of European, African, Japanese and Latino ancestry. Twenty-three novel susceptibility loci were revealed at P<5×10-8; 15 variants were identified among men of European ancestry, 7 from multiethnic analyses and one was associated with early-onset prostate cancer. These 23 variants, in combination with the known prostate cancer risk variants, explain 33% of the familial risk of the disease in European ancestry populations. These findings provide new regions for investigation into the pathogenesis of prostate cancer and demonstrate the utility of combining ancestrally diverse populations to discover risk loci for disease.
PMCID: PMC4383163  PMID: 25217961
20.  Genetic studies of body mass index yield new insights for obesity biology 
Locke, Adam E. | Kahali, Bratati | Berndt, Sonja I. | Justice, Anne E. | Pers, Tune H. | Day, Felix R. | Powell, Corey | Vedantam, Sailaja | Buchkovich, Martin L. | Yang, Jian | Croteau-Chonka, Damien C. | Esko, Tonu | Fall, Tove | Ferreira, Teresa | Gustafsson, Stefan | Kutalik, Zoltán | Luan, Jian’an | Mägi, Reedik | Randall, Joshua C. | Winkler, Thomas W. | Wood, Andrew R. | Workalemahu, Tsegaselassie | Faul, Jessica D. | Smith, Jennifer A. | Zhao, Jing Hua | Zhao, Wei | Chen, Jin | Fehrmann, Rudolf | Hedman, Åsa K. | Karjalainen, Juha | Schmidt, Ellen M. | Absher, Devin | Amin, Najaf | Anderson, Denise | Beekman, Marian | Bolton, Jennifer L. | Bragg-Gresham, Jennifer L. | Buyske, Steven | Demirkan, Ayse | Deng, Guohong | Ehret, Georg B. | Feenstra, Bjarke | Feitosa, Mary F. | Fischer, Krista | Goel, Anuj | Gong, Jian | Jackson, Anne U. | Kanoni, Stavroula | Kleber, Marcus E. | Kristiansson, Kati | Lim, Unhee | Lotay, Vaneet | Mangino, Massimo | Leach, Irene Mateo | Medina-Gomez, Carolina | Medland, Sarah E. | Nalls, Michael A. | Palmer, Cameron D. | Pasko, Dorota | Pechlivanis, Sonali | Peters, Marjolein J. | Prokopenko, Inga | Shungin, Dmitry | Stančáková, Alena | Strawbridge, Rona J. | Sung, Yun Ju | Tanaka, Toshiko | Teumer, Alexander | Trompet, Stella | van der Laan, Sander W. | van Setten, Jessica | Van Vliet-Ostaptchouk, Jana V. | Wang, Zhaoming | Yengo, Loïc | Zhang, Weihua | Isaacs, Aaron | Albrecht, Eva | Ärnlöv, Johan | Arscott, Gillian M. | Attwood, Antony P. | Bandinelli, Stefania | Barrett, Amy | Bas, Isabelita N. | Bellis, Claire | Bennett, Amanda J. | Berne, Christian | Blagieva, Roza | Blüher, Matthias | Böhringer, Stefan | Bonnycastle, Lori L. | Böttcher, Yvonne | Boyd, Heather A. | Bruinenberg, Marcel | Caspersen, Ida H. | Chen, Yii-Der Ida | Clarke, Robert | Daw, E. Warwick | de Craen, Anton J. M. | Delgado, Graciela | Dimitriou, Maria | Doney, Alex S. F. | Eklund, Niina | Estrada, Karol | Eury, Elodie | Folkersen, Lasse | Fraser, Ross M. | Garcia, Melissa E. | Geller, Frank | Giedraitis, Vilmantas | Gigante, Bruna | Go, Alan S. | Golay, Alain | Goodall, Alison H. | Gordon, Scott D. | Gorski, Mathias | Grabe, Hans-Jörgen | Grallert, Harald | Grammer, Tanja B. | Gräßler, Jürgen | Grönberg, Henrik | Groves, Christopher J. | Gusto, Gaëlle | Haessler, Jeffrey | Hall, Per | Haller, Toomas | Hallmans, Goran | Hartman, Catharina A. | Hassinen, Maija | Hayward, Caroline | Heard-Costa, Nancy L. | Helmer, Quinta | Hengstenberg, Christian | Holmen, Oddgeir | Hottenga, Jouke-Jan | James, Alan L. | Jeff, Janina M. | Johansson, Åsa | Jolley, Jennifer | Juliusdottir, Thorhildur | Kinnunen, Leena | Koenig, Wolfgang | Koskenvuo, Markku | Kratzer, Wolfgang | Laitinen, Jaana | Lamina, Claudia | Leander, Karin | Lee, Nanette R. | Lichtner, Peter | Lind, Lars | Lindström, Jaana | Lo, Ken Sin | Lobbens, Stéphane | Lorbeer, Roberto | Lu, Yingchang | Mach, François | Magnusson, Patrik K. E. | Mahajan, Anubha | McArdle, Wendy L. | McLachlan, Stela | Menni, Cristina | Merger, Sigrun | Mihailov, Evelin | Milani, Lili | Moayyeri, Alireza | Monda, Keri L. | Morken, Mario A. | Mulas, Antonella | Müller, Gabriele | Müller-Nurasyid, Martina | Musk, Arthur W. | Nagaraja, Ramaiah | Nöthen, Markus M. | Nolte, Ilja M. | Pilz, Stefan | Rayner, Nigel W. | Renstrom, Frida | Rettig, Rainer | Ried, Janina S. | Ripke, Stephan | Robertson, Neil R. | Rose, Lynda M. | Sanna, Serena | Scharnagl, Hubert | Scholtens, Salome | Schumacher, Fredrick R. | Scott, William R. | Seufferlein, Thomas | Shi, Jianxin | Smith, Albert Vernon | Smolonska, Joanna | Stanton, Alice V. | Steinthorsdottir, Valgerdur | Stirrups, Kathleen | Stringham, Heather M. | Sundström, Johan | Swertz, Morris A. | Swift, Amy J. | Syvänen, Ann-Christine | Tan, Sian-Tsung | Tayo, Bamidele O. | Thorand, Barbara | Thorleifsson, Gudmar | Tyrer, Jonathan P. | Uh, Hae-Won | Vandenput, Liesbeth | Verhulst, Frank C. | Vermeulen, Sita H. | Verweij, Niek | Vonk, Judith M. | Waite, Lindsay L. | Warren, Helen R. | Waterworth, Dawn | Weedon, Michael N. | Wilkens, Lynne R. | Willenborg, Christina | Wilsgaard, Tom | Wojczynski, Mary K. | Wong, Andrew | Wright, Alan F. | Zhang, Qunyuan | Brennan, Eoin P. | Choi, Murim | Dastani, Zari | Drong, Alexander W. | Eriksson, Per | Franco-Cereceda, Anders | Gådin, Jesper R. | Gharavi, Ali G. | Goddard, Michael E. | Handsaker, Robert E. | Huang, Jinyan | Karpe, Fredrik | Kathiresan, Sekar | Keildson, Sarah | Kiryluk, Krzysztof | Kubo, Michiaki | Lee, Jong-Young | Liang, Liming | Lifton, Richard P. | Ma, Baoshan | McCarroll, Steven A. | McKnight, Amy J. | Min, Josine L. | Moffatt, Miriam F. | Montgomery, Grant W. | Murabito, Joanne M. | Nicholson, George | Nyholt, Dale R. | Okada, Yukinori | Perry, John R. B. | Dorajoo, Rajkumar | Reinmaa, Eva | Salem, Rany M. | Sandholm, Niina | Scott, Robert A. | Stolk, Lisette | Takahashi, Atsushi | Tanaka, Toshihiro | van ’t Hooft, Ferdinand M. | Vinkhuyzen, Anna A. E. | Westra, Harm-Jan | Zheng, Wei | Zondervan, Krina T. | Heath, Andrew C. | Arveiler, Dominique | Bakker, Stephan J. L. | Beilby, John | Bergman, Richard N. | Blangero, John | Bovet, Pascal | Campbell, Harry | Caulfield, Mark J. | Cesana, Giancarlo | Chakravarti, Aravinda | Chasman, Daniel I. | Chines, Peter S. | Collins, Francis S. | Crawford, Dana C. | Cupples, L. Adrienne | Cusi, Daniele | Danesh, John | de Faire, Ulf | den Ruijter, Hester M. | Dominiczak, Anna F. | Erbel, Raimund | Erdmann, Jeanette | Eriksson, Johan G. | Farrall, Martin | Felix, Stephan B. | Ferrannini, Ele | Ferrières, Jean | Ford, Ian | Forouhi, Nita G. | Forrester, Terrence | Franco, Oscar H. | Gansevoort, Ron T. | Gejman, Pablo V. | Gieger, Christian | Gottesman, Omri | Gudnason, Vilmundur | Gyllensten, Ulf | Hall, Alistair S. | Harris, Tamara B. | Hattersley, Andrew T. | Hicks, Andrew A. | Hindorff, Lucia A. | Hingorani, Aroon D. | Hofman, Albert | Homuth, Georg | Hovingh, G. Kees | Humphries, Steve E. | Hunt, Steven C. | Hyppönen, Elina | Illig, Thomas | Jacobs, Kevin B. | Jarvelin, Marjo-Riitta | Jöckel, Karl-Heinz | Johansen, Berit | Jousilahti, Pekka | Jukema, J. Wouter | Jula, Antti M. | Kaprio, Jaakko | Kastelein, John J. P. | Keinanen-Kiukaanniemi, Sirkka M. | Kiemeney, Lambertus A. | Knekt, Paul | Kooner, Jaspal S. | Kooperberg, Charles | Kovacs, Peter | Kraja, Aldi T. | Kumari, Meena | Kuusisto, Johanna | Lakka, Timo A. | Langenberg, Claudia | Marchand, Loic Le | Lehtimäki, Terho | Lyssenko, Valeriya | Männistö, Satu | Marette, André | Matise, Tara C. | McKenzie, Colin A. | McKnight, Barbara | Moll, Frans L. | Morris, Andrew D. | Morris, Andrew P. | Murray, Jeffrey C. | Nelis, Mari | Ohlsson, Claes | Oldehinkel, Albertine J. | Ong, Ken K. | Madden, Pamela A. F. | Pasterkamp, Gerard | Peden, John F. | Peters, Annette | Postma, Dirkje S. | Pramstaller, Peter P. | Price, Jackie F. | Qi, Lu | Raitakari, Olli T. | Rankinen, Tuomo | Rao, D. C. | Rice, Treva K. | Ridker, Paul M. | Rioux, John D. | Ritchie, Marylyn D. | Rudan, Igor | Salomaa, Veikko | Samani, Nilesh J. | Saramies, Jouko | Sarzynski, Mark A. | Schunkert, Heribert | Schwarz, Peter E. H. | Sever, Peter | Shuldiner, Alan R. | Sinisalo, Juha | Stolk, Ronald P. | Strauch, Konstantin | Tönjes, Anke | Trégouët, David-Alexandre | Tremblay, Angelo | Tremoli, Elena | Virtamo, Jarmo | Vohl, Marie-Claude | Völker, Uwe | Waeber, Gérard | Willemsen, Gonneke | Witteman, Jacqueline C. | Zillikens, M. Carola | Adair, Linda S. | Amouyel, Philippe | Asselbergs, Folkert W. | Assimes, Themistocles L. | Bochud, Murielle | Boehm, Bernhard O. | Boerwinkle, Eric | Bornstein, Stefan R. | Bottinger, Erwin P. | Bouchard, Claude | Cauchi, Stéphane | Chambers, John C. | Chanock, Stephen J. | Cooper, Richard S. | de Bakker, Paul I. W. | Dedoussis, George | Ferrucci, Luigi | Franks, Paul W. | Froguel, Philippe | Groop, Leif C. | Haiman, Christopher A. | Hamsten, Anders | Hui, Jennie | Hunter, David J. | Hveem, Kristian | Kaplan, Robert C. | Kivimaki, Mika | Kuh, Diana | Laakso, Markku | Liu, Yongmei | Martin, Nicholas G. | März, Winfried | Melbye, Mads | Metspalu, Andres | Moebus, Susanne | Munroe, Patricia B. | Njølstad, Inger | Oostra, Ben A. | Palmer, Colin N. A. | Pedersen, Nancy L. | Perola, Markus | Pérusse, Louis | Peters, Ulrike | Power, Chris | Quertermous, Thomas | Rauramaa, Rainer | Rivadeneira, Fernando | Saaristo, Timo E. | Saleheen, Danish | Sattar, Naveed | Schadt, Eric E. | Schlessinger, David | Slagboom, P. Eline | Snieder, Harold | Spector, Tim D. | Thorsteinsdottir, Unnur | Stumvoll, Michael | Tuomilehto, Jaakko | Uitterlinden, André G. | Uusitupa, Matti | van der Harst, Pim | Walker, Mark | Wallaschofski, Henri | Wareham, Nicholas J. | Watkins, Hugh | Weir, David R. | Wichmann, H-Erich | Wilson, James F. | Zanen, Pieter | Borecki, Ingrid B. | Deloukas, Panos | Fox, Caroline S. | Heid, Iris M. | O’Connell, Jeffrey R. | Strachan, David P. | Stefansson, Kari | van Duijn, Cornelia M. | Abecasis, Gonçalo R. | Franke, Lude | Frayling, Timothy M. | McCarthy, Mark I. | Visscher, Peter M. | Scherag, André | Willer, Cristen J. | Boehnke, Michael | Mohlke, Karen L. | Lindgren, Cecilia M. | Beckmann, Jacques S. | Barroso, Inês | North, Kari E. | Ingelsson, Erik | Hirschhorn, Joel N. | Loos, Ruth J. F. | Speliotes, Elizabeth K.
Nature  2015;518(7538):197-206.
Obesity is heritable and predisposes to many diseases. To understand the genetic basis of obesity better, here we conduct a genome-wide association study and Metabochip meta-analysis of body mass index (BMI), a measure commonly used to define obesity and assess adiposity, in up to 339,224 individuals. This analysis identifies 97 BMI-associated loci (P < 5 × 10−8), 56 of which are novel. Five loci demonstrate clear evidence of several independent association signals, and many loci have significant effects on other metabolic phenotypes. The 97 loci account for ~2.7% of BMI variation, and genome-wide estimates suggest that common variation accounts for >20% of BMI variation. Pathway analyses provide strong support for a role of the central nervous system in obesity susceptibility and implicate new genes and pathways, including those related to synaptic function, glutamate signalling, insulin secretion/action, energy metabolism, lipid biology and adipogenesis.
PMCID: PMC4382211  PMID: 25673413
21.  Germline variation in NCF4, an innate immunity gene, is associated with an increased risk of colorectal cancer 
Chronic inflammation has been implicated in the etiology of colorectal adenoma and cancer; however, few key inflammatory genes mediating this relationship have been identified. In this study, we investigated the association of germline variation in innate immunity genes in relation to the risk of colorectal neoplasia. Our study was based on the analysis of samples collected from the Prostate, Lung, Colorectal and Ovarian (PLCO) Cancer Screening Trial. We investigated the association between 196 tag single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in 20 key innate immunity genes with risk of advanced colorectal adenoma and cancer in 719 adenoma cases, 481 cancer cases and 719 controls. Logistic regression was used to estimate odds ratios and 95% confidence intervals. After Bonferroni correction, the AG/GG genotype of rs5995355, which is upstream of NCF4, was associated with an increased risk of colorectal cancer (odds ratio [OR] 2.43, 95% confidence interval [95% CI] 1.73 – 3.39; P<0.0001). NCF4 is part of the NAPDH complex, a key factor in biochemical pathways and the innate immune response. While not definitive, our analyses suggest that the variant allele does not affect expression of NCF4, but rather modulates activity of the NADPH complex. Additional studies on the functional consequences of rs5995355 in NCF4 may help to clarify the mechanistic link between inflammation and colorectal cancer.
PMCID: PMC3947351  PMID: 23982929
colorectal cancer; single nucleotide polymorphism; innate immunity; NCF4
22.  Genome-wide association study identifies multiple susceptibility loci for pancreatic cancer 
Wolpin, Brian M. | Rizzato, Cosmeri | Kraft, Peter | Kooperberg, Charles | Petersen, Gloria M. | Wang, Zhaoming | Arslan, Alan A. | Beane-Freeman, Laura | Bracci, Paige M. | Buring, Julie | Canzian, Federico | Duell, Eric J. | Gallinger, Steven | Giles, Graham G. | Goodman, Gary E. | Goodman, Phyllis J. | Jacobs, Eric J. | Kamineni, Aruna | Klein, Alison P. | Kolonel, Laurence N. | Kulke, Matthew H. | Li, Donghui | Malats, Núria | Olson, Sara H. | Risch, Harvey A. | Sesso, Howard D. | Visvanathan, Kala | White, Emily | Zheng, Wei | Abnet, Christian C. | Albanes, Demetrius | Andreotti, Gabriella | Austin, Melissa A. | Barfield, Richard | Basso, Daniela | Berndt, Sonja I. | Boutron-Ruault, Marie-Christine | Brotzman, Michelle | Büchler, Markus W. | Bueno-de-Mesquita, H. Bas | Bugert, Peter | Burdette, Laurie | Campa, Daniele | Caporaso, Neil E. | Capurso, Gabriele | Chung, Charles | Cotterchio, Michelle | Costello, Eithne | Elena, Joanne | Funel, Niccola | Gaziano, J. Michael | Giese, Nathalia A. | Giovannucci, Edward L. | Goggins, Michael | Gorman, Megan J. | Gross, Myron | Haiman, Christopher A. | Hassan, Manal | Helzlsouer, Kathy J. | Henderson, Brian E. | Holly, Elizabeth A. | Hu, Nan | Hunter, David J. | Innocenti, Federico | Jenab, Mazda | Kaaks, Rudolf | Key, Timothy J. | Khaw, Kay-Tee | Klein, Eric A. | Kogevinas, Manolis | Krogh, Vittorio | Kupcinskas, Juozas | Kurtz, Robert C. | LaCroix, Andrea | Landi, Maria T. | Landi, Stefano | Le Marchand, Loic | Mambrini, Andrea | Mannisto, Satu | Milne, Roger L. | Nakamura, Yusuke | Oberg, Ann L. | Owzar, Kouros | Patel, Alpa V. | Peeters, Petra H. M. | Peters, Ulrike | Pezzilli, Raffaele | Piepoli, Ada | Porta, Miquel | Real, Francisco X. | Riboli, Elio | Rothman, Nathaniel | Scarpa, Aldo | Shu, Xiao-Ou | Silverman, Debra T. | Soucek, Pavel | Sund, Malin | Talar-Wojnarowska, Renata | Taylor, Philip R. | Theodoropoulos, George E. | Thornquist, Mark | Tjønneland, Anne | Tobias, Geoffrey S. | Trichopoulos, Dimitrios | Vodicka, Pavel | Wactawski-Wende, Jean | Wentzensen, Nicolas | Wu, Chen | Yu, Herbert | Yu, Kai | Zeleniuch-Jacquotte, Anne | Hoover, Robert | Hartge, Patricia | Fuchs, Charles | Chanock, Stephen J. | Stolzenberg-Solomon, Rachael S. | Amundadottir, Laufey T.
Nature genetics  2014;46(9):994-1000.
We performed a multistage genome-wide association study (GWAS) including 7,683 individuals with pancreatic cancer and 14,397 controls of European descent. Four new loci reached genome-wide significance: rs6971499 at 7q32.3 (LINC-PINT; per-allele odds ratio [OR] = 0.79; 95% confidence interval [CI] = 0.74–0.84; P = 3.0×10−12), rs7190458 at 16q23.1 (BCAR1/CTRB1/CTRB2; OR = 1.46; 95% CI = 1.30–1.65; P = 1.1×10−10), rs9581943 at 13q12.2 (PDX1; OR = 1.15; 95% CI = 1.10–1.20; P = 2.4×10−9), and rs16986825 at 22q12.1 (ZNRF3; OR = 1.18; 95% CI = 1.12–1.25; P = 1.2×10−8). An independent signal was identified in exon 2 of TERT at the established region 5p15.33 (rs2736098; OR = 0.80; 95% CI = 0.76–0.85; P = 9.8×10−14). We also identified a locus at 8q24.21 (rs1561927; P = 1.3×10−7) that approached genome-wide significance located 455 kb telomeric of PVT1. Our study has identified multiple new susceptibility alleles for pancreatic cancer worthy of follow-up studies.
PMCID: PMC4191666  PMID: 25086665
23.  Trans-ethnic genome-wide association study of colorectal cancer identifies a new susceptibility locus in VTI1A 
Nature communications  2014;5:4613.
The genetic basis of sporadic colorectal cancer (CRC) is not well explained by known risk polymorphisms. Here we perform a meta-analysis of two genome-wide association studies in 2,627 cases and 3,797 controls of Japanese ancestry and 1,894 cases and 4,703 controls of African ancestry, to identify genetic variants that contribute to CRC susceptibility. We replicate genome-wide statistically significant associations (P < 5×10−8) in 16,823 cases and 18,211 controls of European ancestry. This study reveals a new pan-ethnic CRC risk locus at 10q25 (rs12241008, intronic to VTI1A; P=1.4×10−9), providing additional insight into the etiology of CRC and highlighting the value of association mapping in diverse populations.
PMCID: PMC4180879  PMID: 25105248
24.  A genome-wide association study of marginal zone lymphoma shows association to the HLA region 
Vijai, Joseph | Wang, Zhaoming | Berndt, Sonja I. | Skibola, Christine F. | Slager, Susan L. | de Sanjose, Silvia | Melbye, Mads | Glimelius, Bengt | Bracci, Paige M. | Conde, Lucia | Birmann, Brenda M. | Wang, Sophia S. | Brooks-Wilson, Angela R. | Lan, Qing | de Bakker, Paul I. W. | Vermeulen, Roel C. H. | Portlock, Carol | Ansell, Stephen M. | Link, Brian K. | Riby, Jacques | North, Kari E. | Gu, Jian | Hjalgrim, Henrik | Cozen, Wendy | Becker, Nikolaus | Teras, Lauren R. | Spinelli, John J. | Turner, Jenny | Zhang, Yawei | Purdue, Mark P. | Giles, Graham G. | Kelly, Rachel S. | Zeleniuch-Jacquotte, Anne | Ennas, Maria Grazia | Monnereau, Alain | Bertrand, Kimberly A. | Albanes, Demetrius | Lightfoot, Tracy | Yeager, Meredith | Chung, Charles C. | Burdett, Laurie | Hutchinson, Amy | Lawrence, Charles | Montalvan, Rebecca | Liang, Liming | Huang, Jinyan | Ma, Baoshan | Villano, Danylo J. | Maria, Ann | Corines, Marina | Thomas, Tinu | Novak, Anne J. | Dogan, Ahmet | Liebow, Mark | Thompson, Carrie A. | Witzig, Thomas E. | Habermann, Thomas M. | Weiner, George J. | Smith, Martyn T. | Holly, Elizabeth A. | Jackson, Rebecca D. | Tinker, Lesley F. | Ye, Yuanqing | Adami, Hans-Olov | Smedby, Karin E. | De Roos, Anneclaire J. | Hartge, Patricia | Morton, Lindsay M. | Severson, Richard K. | Benavente, Yolanda | Boffetta, Paolo | Brennan, Paul | Foretova, Lenka | Maynadie, Marc | McKay, James | Staines, Anthony | Diver, W. Ryan | Vajdic, Claire M. | Armstrong, Bruce K. | Kricker, Anne | Zheng, Tongzhang | Holford, Theodore R. | Severi, Gianluca | Vineis, Paolo | Ferri, Giovanni M. | Ricco, Rosalia | Miligi, Lucia | Clavel, Jacqueline | Giovannucci, Edward | Kraft, Peter | Virtamo, Jarmo | Smith, Alex | Kane, Eleanor | Roman, Eve | Chiu, Brian C. H. | Fraumeni, Joseph F. | Wu, Xifeng | Cerhan, James R. | Offit, Kenneth | Chanock, Stephen J. | Rothman, Nathaniel | Nieters, Alexandra
Nature Communications  2015;6:5751.
Marginal zone lymphoma (MZL) is the third most common subtype of B-cell non-Hodgkin lymphoma. Here we perform a two-stage GWAS of 1,281 MZL cases and 7,127 controls of European ancestry and identify two independent loci near BTNL2 (rs9461741, P=3.95 × 10−15) and HLA-B (rs2922994, P=2.43 × 10−9) in the HLA region significantly associated with MZL risk. This is the first evidence that genetic variation in the major histocompatibility complex influences MZL susceptibility.
Marginal zone lymphoma (MZL) is a common subtype of B-cell non-Hodgkin lymphoma. Here the authors carry out a two-stage genome-wide association study in over 8,000 Europeans and identify two new MZL risk loci at chromosome 6p, implicating the major histocompatibility complex in the disease for the first time.
PMCID: PMC4287989  PMID: 25569183
25.  Fine-mapping of genome-wide association study-identified risk loci for colorectal cancer in African Americans 
Human Molecular Genetics  2013;22(24):5048-5055.
Genome-wide association studies of colorectal cancer (CRC) in Europeans and Asians have identified 21 risk susceptibility regions [29 index single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs)]. Characterizing these risk regions in diverse racial groups with different linkage disequilibrium (LD) structure can help localize causal variants. We examined associations between CRC and all 29 index SNPs in 6597 African Americans (1894 cases and 4703 controls). Nine SNPs in eight regions (5q31.1, 6q26-q27, 8q23.3, 8q24.21, 11q13.4, 15q13.3, 18q21.1 and 20p12.3) formally replicated in our data with one-sided P-values <0.05 and the same risk directions as reported previously. We performed fine-mapping of the 21 risk regions (including 250 kb on both sides of the index SNPs) using genotyped and imputed markers at the density of the 1000 Genomes Project to search for additional or more predictive risk markers. Among the SNPs correlated with the index variants, two markers, rs12759486 (or rs7547751, a putative functional variant in perfect LD with it) in 1q41 and rs7252505 in 19q13.1, were more strongly and statistically significantly associated with CRC (P < 0.0006). The average per allele risk was improved using the replicated index variants and the two new markers (odds ratio = 1.14, P = 6.5 × 10−16) in African Americans, compared with using all index SNPs (odds ratio = 1.07, P = 3.4 × 10−10). The contribution of the two new risk SNPs to CRC heritability was estimated to be 1.5% in African Americans. This study highlights the importance of fine-mapping in diverse populations.
PMCID: PMC3836473  PMID: 23851122

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