BRCA1-associated breast and ovarian cancer risks can be modified by common genetic variants. To identify further cancer risk-modifying loci, we performed a multi-stage GWAS of 11,705 BRCA1 carriers (of whom 5,920 were diagnosed with breast and 1,839 were diagnosed with ovarian cancer), with a further replication in an additional sample of 2,646 BRCA1 carriers. We identified a novel breast cancer risk modifier locus at 1q32 for BRCA1 carriers (rs2290854, P = 2.7×10−8, HR = 1.14, 95% CI: 1.09–1.20). In addition, we identified two novel ovarian cancer risk modifier loci: 17q21.31 (rs17631303, P = 1.4×10−8, HR = 1.27, 95% CI: 1.17–1.38) and 4q32.3 (rs4691139, P = 3.4×10−8, HR = 1.20, 95% CI: 1.17–1.38). The 4q32.3 locus was not associated with ovarian cancer risk in the general population or BRCA2 carriers, suggesting a BRCA1-specific association. The 17q21.31 locus was also associated with ovarian cancer risk in 8,211 BRCA2 carriers (P = 2×10−4). These loci may lead to an improved understanding of the etiology of breast and ovarian tumors in BRCA1 carriers. Based on the joint distribution of the known BRCA1 breast cancer risk-modifying loci, we estimated that the breast cancer lifetime risks for the 5% of BRCA1 carriers at lowest risk are 28%–50% compared to 81%–100% for the 5% at highest risk. Similarly, based on the known ovarian cancer risk-modifying loci, the 5% of BRCA1 carriers at lowest risk have an estimated lifetime risk of developing ovarian cancer of 28% or lower, whereas the 5% at highest risk will have a risk of 63% or higher. Such differences in risk may have important implications for risk prediction and clinical management for BRCA1 carriers.
BRCA1 mutation carriers have increased and variable risks of breast and ovarian cancer. To identify modifiers of breast and ovarian cancer risk in this population, a multi-stage GWAS of 14,351 BRCA1 mutation carriers was performed. Loci 1q32 and TCF7L2 at 10q25.3 were associated with breast cancer risk, and two loci at 4q32.2 and 17q21.31 were associated with ovarian cancer risk. The 4q32.3 ovarian cancer locus was not associated with ovarian cancer risk in the general population or in BRCA2 carriers and is the first indication of a BRCA1-specific risk locus for either breast or ovarian cancer. Furthermore, modeling the influence of these modifiers on cumulative risk of breast and ovarian cancer in BRCA1 mutation carriers for the first time showed that a wide range of individual absolute risks of each cancer can be estimated. These differences suggest that genetic risk modifiers may be incorporated into the clinical management of BRCA1 mutation carriers.
To determine the likelihood of long-term amenorrhea after treatment with chemotherapy in women with breast cancer who carry a BRCA1 or BRCA2 mutation.
Patients and Methods
We conducted a multicenter survey of 1,954 young women with a BRCA1 or BRCA2 mutation who were treated for breast cancer. We included premenopausal women who were diagnosed with invasive breast cancer between 26 and 47 years of age. We determined the age of onset of amenorrhea after breast cancer for women who were and were not treated with chemotherapy, alone or with tamoxifen. We considered chemotherapy-induced amenorrhea to have occurred when the patient experienced ≥ 2 years of amenorrhea, commencing within 2 years of initiating chemotherapy, with no resumption of menses.
Of the 1,426 women who received chemotherapy, 35% experienced long-term amenorrhea. Of the 528 women who did not receive chemotherapy, 5.3% developed long-term amenorrhea. The probabilities of chemotherapy-induced amenorrhea were 7.2% for women diagnosed before age 30 years, 33% for women age 31 to 44 years, and 79% for women diagnosed after age 45 years (P trend < .001). The probability of induced amenorrhea was higher for women who received tamoxifen than for those who did not (52% v 29%; P < .001).
Age at treatment and use of tamoxifen are important predictors of chemotherapy-induced amenorrhea in women who carry a BRCA1 or BRCA2 mutation. The risk of induced long-term amenorrhea does not seem to be greater among mutation carriers than among women who do not carry a mutation.
Coeliac disease (CeD) is a highly heritable common autoimmune disease involving chronic small intestinal inflammation in response to dietary wheat. The human leukocyte antigen (HLA) region, and 40 newer regions identified by genome wide association studies (GWAS) and dense fine mapping, account for ∼40% of the disease heritability. We hypothesized that in pedigrees with multiple individuals with CeD rare [minor allele frequency (MAF) <0.5%] mutations of larger effect size (odds ratios of ∼ 2–5) might exist. We sequenced the exomes of 75 coeliac individuals of European ancestry from 55 multiply affected families. We selected interesting variants and genes for further follow up using a combination of: an assessment of shared variants between related subjects, a model-free linkage test, and gene burden tests for multiple, potentially causal, variants. We next performed highly multiplexed amplicon resequencing of all RefSeq exons from 24 candidate genes selected on the basis of the exome sequencing data in 2,248 unrelated coeliac cases and 2,230 controls. 1,335 variants with a 99.9% genotyping call rate were observed in 4,478 samples, of which 939 were present in coding regions of 24 genes (Ti/Tv 2.99). 91.7% of coding variants were rare (MAF <0.5%) and 60% were novel. Gene burden tests performed on rare functional variants identified no significant associations (p<1×10−3) in the resequenced candidate genes. Our strategy of sequencing multiply affected families with deep follow up of candidate genes has not identified any new CeD risk mutations.
To determine the prevalence and type of BRCA1 and BRCA2 (BRCA) mutations among Hispanics in the Southwestern United States and their potential impact on genetic cancer risk assessment (GCRA).
Patients and Methods
Hispanics (n = 746) with a personal or family history of breast and/or ovarian cancer were enrolled in an institutional review board–approved registry and received GCRA and BRCA testing within a consortium of 14 clinics. Population-based Hispanic breast cancer cases (n = 492) enrolled in the Northern California Breast Cancer Family Registry, negative by sequencing for BRCA mutations, were analyzed for the presence of the BRCA1 ex9-12del large rearrangement.
Deleterious BRCA mutations were detected in 189 (25%) of 746 familial clinic patients (124 BRCA1, 65 BRCA2); 21 (11%) of 189 were large rearrangement mutations, of which 62% (13 of 21) were BRCA1 ex9-12del. Nine recurrent mutations accounted for 53% of the total. Among these, BRCA1 ex9-12del seems to be a Mexican founder mutation and represents 10% to 12% of all BRCA1 mutations in clinic- and population-based cohorts in the United States.
BRCA mutations were prevalent in the largest study of Hispanic breast and/or ovarian cancer families in the United States to date, and a significant proportion were large rearrangement mutations. The high frequency of large rearrangement mutations warrants screening in every case. We document the first Mexican founder mutation (BRCA1 ex9-12del), which, along with other recurrent mutations, suggests the potential for a cost-effective panel approach to ancestry-informed GCRA.
Female steroid hormones are hypothesized to play a protective role in pancreatic cancer risk. However, results from epidemiologic studies that examined hormone-related exposures have been inconsistent. The California Teachers Study is a cohort study of female public school professionals that was established in 1995–1996. Of the 118,164 eligible study participants, 323 women were diagnosed with incident invasive pancreatic cancer through December 31, 2009. Multivariable Cox proportional hazards regression methods were used to estimate hazard ratios and 95% confidence intervals for the association of pancreatic cancer risk with reproductive factors and exogenous hormone use. Current users of estrogen-only therapy at baseline (1995–1996) had a lower risk of pancreatic cancer than did participants who had never used hormone therapy (hazard ratio = 0.59, 95% confidence interval: 0.42, 0.84). Use of estrogen-plus-progestin therapy was not associated with the risk of pancreatic cancer. A longer duration of oral contraceptive use (≥10 years of use compared with never use) was associated with an increased risk of cancer (hazard ratio = 1.72, 95% confidence interval: 1.19, 2.49). Reproductive factors, including age at menarche, parity, breastfeeding, and age at menopause, were not associated with pancreatic cancer risk. Our results suggest that increased estrogen exposure through estrogen-only therapy may reduce pancreatic cancer risk in women.
hormone therapy; oral contraceptives; pancreatic cancer
Physicians are often approached by young women with a BRCA mutation and a recent history of breast cancer who wish to have a baby. They wish to know if pregnancy impacts upon their future risks of cancer recurrence and survival. To date, there is little information on the survival experience of women who carry a mutation in one of the BRCA genes and who become pregnant. From an international multi-center cohort study of 12,084 women with a BRCA1 or BRCA2 mutation, we identified 128 case subjects who were diagnosed with breast cancer while pregnant or who became pregnant after a diagnosis of breast cancer. These women were age-matched to 269 mutation carriers with breast cancer who did not become pregnant (controls). Subjects were followed from the date of breast cancer diagnosis until the date of last follow-up or death from breast cancer. The Kaplan–Meier method was used to estimate 15-year survival rates. The hazard ratio for survival associated with pregnancy was calculated using a left-truncated Cox proportional hazard model, adjusting for other prognostic factors. Among women who were diagnosed with breast cancer when pregnant or who became pregnant thereafter, the 15-year survival rate was 91.5 %, compared to a survival of 88.6 % for women who did not become pregnant (adjusted hazard ratio = 0.76; 95 % CI 0.31–1.91; p = 0.56). Pregnancy concurrent with or after a diagnosis of breast cancer does not appear to adversely affect survival among BRCA1/2 mutation carriers.
BRCA1; BRCA2; Breast cancer; Pregnancy; Survival
Haematopoietic cell transplantation (HCT) survivors are at increased risk for developing congestive heart failure (CHF), primarily due to pre-HCT exposure to anthracyclines. We examined the association between the development of CHF after HCT and polymorphisms in 16 candidate genes involved in anthracycline metabolism, iron homeostasis, anti-oxidant defence, and myocardial remodelling. A nested case-control study design was used. Cases (post-HCT CHF) were identified from 2,950 patients who underwent HCT between 1988 and 2007 at City of Hope and had survived ≥1 year. This cohort formed the sampling frame for selecting controls (without CHF) matched on: age, race/ethnicity, cumulative anthracycline exposure, stem cell source (allogeneic, autologous), and length of follow-up. Seventy-seven cases with pre-HCT germline DNA and 178 controls were genotyped. Multivariate analysis revealed that the odds of CHF was higher in females (Odds Ratio [OR]=2.9, p<0.01), individuals with pre-HCT chest radiation (OR=4.7, p=0.05), hypertension (OR=2.9, p=0.01), and with variants of genes coding for the NAD(P)H-oxidase subunit RAC2 (rs13058338, 7508T→A; OR=2.8, p<0.01), HFE (rs1799945, 63C→G; OR=2.5, p=0.05) or the doxorubicin efflux transporter ABCC2 (rs8187710, 1515G→A; OR=4.3, p<0.01). A combined (clinical and genetic) CHF predictive model performed better (area under the curve [AUC], 0.79) than the genetic (AUC=0.67) or the clinical (AUC=0.69) models alone.
Anthracyclines; congestive heart failure; genetic susceptibility; haematopoietic cell transplantation; late effects
The Genome Analysis Toolkit (GATK) is commonly used for variant calling of single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) and small insertions and deletions (indels) from short-read sequencing data aligned against a reference genome. There have been a number of variant calling comparisons against GATK, but an equally comprehensive comparison for VarScan not yet been performed. More specifically, we compare (1) the effects of different pre-processing steps prior to variant calling with both GATK and VarScan, (2) VarScan variants called with increasingly conservative parameters, and (3) filtered and unfiltered GATK variant calls (for both the UnifiedGenotyper and the HaplotypeCaller). Variant calling was performed on three datasets (1 targeted exon dataset and 2 exome datasets), each with approximately a dozen subjects. In most cases, pre-processing steps (e.g., indel realignment and quality score base recalibration using GATK) had only a modest impact on the variant calls, but the importance of the pre-processing steps varied between datasets and variant callers. Based upon concordance statistics presented in this study, we recommend GATK users focus on “high-quality” GATK variants by filtering out variants flagged as low-quality. We also found that running VarScan with a conservative set of parameters (referred to as “VarScan-Cons”) resulted in a reproducible list of variants, with high concordance (>97%) to high-quality variants called by the GATK UnifiedGenotyper and HaplotypeCaller. These conservative parameters result in decreased sensitivity, but the VarScan-Cons variant list could still recover 84–88% of the high-quality GATK SNPs in the exome datasets. This study also provides limited evidence that VarScan-Cons has a decreased false positive rate among novel variants (relative to high-quality GATK SNPs) and that the GATK HaplotypeCaller has an increased false positive rate for indels (relative to VarScan-Cons and high-quality GATK UnifiedGenotyper indels). More broadly, we believe the metrics used for comparison in this study can be useful in assessing the quality of variant calls in the context of a specific experimental design. As an example, a limited number of variant calling comparisons are also performed on two additional variant callers.
Variant calling; Exome; Targeted sequencing; GATK; VarScan; SNP; Small indel
We performed a genome-wide association study (GWAS) of 1550 North American celiac disease cases and 3084 controls. Twelve SNPs, distributed across four regions (3p21.31, 4q27, 6q15, 6q25), were significantly associated with disease (p-value <1.0×10−7), and a further seven SNPs, across four additional regions (1q24.3, 10p15.1, 6q22.31, 17q21.32) had suggestive evidence (1.0×10−7 < p-value < 1.0×10−6). This study replicated a previous suggestive association within FRMD4B (3p14.1), confirming it as a celiac disease locus. All four regions with significant associations and two regions with suggestive results (1q24.3, 10p15.1) were known disease loci. The 6q22.31 and 10p11.23 regions were not replicated. A total of 410 SNPs distributed across the eight significant and suggestive regions were tested for association with dermatitis herpetiformis and microscopic colitis. Preliminary, suggestive statistical evidence for association with the two traits was found at chromosomes 3p21.31, 6q15, 6q25, 1q24.3 and 10p11.23, with future studies being required to validate the reported associations.
Breast cancer incidence is lower in African Americans than in Caucasian Americans. However, African-American women have higher breast cancer mortality rates and tend to be diagnosed with earlier-onset disease. Identifying factors correlated to the racial/ethnic variation in the epidemiology of breast cancer may provide better understanding of the more aggressive disease at diagnosis. Truncating germline mutations in PALB2 have been identified in approximately 1% of early-onset and/or familial breast cancer cases. To date, PALB2 mutation testing has not been performed in African-American breast cancer cases.
We screened for germline mutations in PALB2 in 139 African-American breast cases by denaturing high-performance liquid chromatography and direct sequencing.
Twelve variants were identified in these cases and none caused truncation of the protein. Three missense variants, including two rare variants (P8L and T300I) and one common variant (P210L), were predicted to be pathogenic, and were located in a coiled-coil domain of PALB2 required for RAD51- and BRCA1-binding. We investigated and found no significant association between the P210L variant and breast cancer risk in a small case-control study of African-American women.
This study adds to the literature that PALB2 mutations, although rare, appear to play a role in breast cancer in all populations investigated to date.
germline mutations; PALB2; missense variants; breast cancer; African Americans
BRCA1 and BRCA2 mutation carriers have a lifetime breast cancer risk of 40% to 80%, suggesting the presence of risk modifiers. We previously identified significant associations in genetic variants in the insulin-like growth factor (IGF) signaling pathway. Here, we investigate additional IGF signaling genes as risk modifiers for breast cancer development in BRCA carriers.
A cohort of 1,019 BRCA1 and 500 BRCA2 mutation carriers were genotyped for 99 single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNP) in 13 genes. Proportional hazards regression was used to model time from birth to diagnosis of breast cancer for BRCA1 and BRCA2 carriers separately. For linkage disequilibrium (LD) blocks with multiple SNPs, an additive genetic model was used. For an SNP analysis, no additivity assumptions were made.
Significant associations were found between risk of breast cancer and LD blocks in IGF2 for BRCA1 and BRCA2 mutation carriers (global P values of 0.009 for BRCA1 and 0.007 for BRCA2), HTRA1 for BRCA1 carriers (global P value of 0.005), and MMP3 for BRCA2 carriers (global P = 0.0000007 for BRCA2).
We identified significant associations of genetic variants involved in IGF signaling. With the known interaction of BRCA1 and IGF signaling and the loss of PTEN in a majority of BRCA1 tumors, this suggests that signaling through AKT may modify breast cancer risk in BRCA1 carriers.
These results suggest potential avenues for future research targeting the IGF signaling pathway in modifying risk in BRCA1and BRCA2 mutation carriers.
Single Nucleotide Polymorphisms (SNPs) in genes involved in the DNA Base Excision Repair (BER) pathway could be associated with cancer risk in carriers of mutations in the high-penetrance susceptibility genes BRCA1 and BRCA2, given the relation of synthetic lethality that exists between one of the components of the BER pathway, PARP1 (poly ADP ribose polymerase), and both BRCA1 and BRCA2. In the present study, we have performed a comprehensive analysis of 18 genes involved in BER using a tagging SNP approach in a large series of BRCA1 and BRCA2 mutation carriers. 144 SNPs were analyzed in a two stage study involving 23,463 carriers from the CIMBA consortium (the Consortium of Investigators of Modifiers of BRCA1 and BRCA2). Eleven SNPs showed evidence of association with breast and/or ovarian cancer at p<0.05 in the combined analysis. Four of the five genes for which strongest evidence of association was observed were DNA glycosylases. The strongest evidence was for rs1466785 in the NEIL2 (endonuclease VIII-like 2) gene (HR: 1.09, 95% CI (1.03–1.16), p = 2.7×10−3) for association with breast cancer risk in BRCA2 mutation carriers, and rs2304277 in the OGG1 (8-guanine DNA glycosylase) gene, with ovarian cancer risk in BRCA1 mutation carriers (HR: 1.12 95%CI: 1.03–1.21, p = 4.8×10−3). DNA glycosylases involved in the first steps of the BER pathway may be associated with cancer risk in BRCA1/2 mutation carriers and should be more comprehensively studied.
Women harboring a germ-line mutation in the BRCA1 or BRCA2 genes have a high lifetime risk to develop breast and/or ovarian cancer. However, not all carriers develop cancer and high variability exists regarding age of onset of the disease and type of tumor. One of the causes of this variability lies in other genetic factors that modulate the phenotype, the so-called modifier genes. Identification of these genes might have important implications for risk assessment and decision making regarding prevention of the disease. Given that BRCA1 and BRCA2 participate in the repair of DNA double strand breaks, here we have investigated whether variations, Single Nucleotide Polymorphisms (SNPs), in genes participating in other DNA repair pathway may be associated with cancer risk in BRCA carriers. We have selected the Base Excision Repair pathway because BRCA defective cells are extremely sensitive to the inhibition of one of its components, PARP1. Thanks to a large international collaborative effort, we have been able to identify at least two SNPs that are associated with increased cancer risk in BRCA1 and BRCA2 mutation carriers respectively. These findings could have implications not only for risk assessment, but also for treatment of BRCA1/2 mutation carriers with PARP inhibitors.
Mitochondria play important roles in cellular energy production, free radical generation and apoptosis. In a previous report in Cancer Research, the mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) G10398A (Thr → Ala) polymorphism was associated with breast cancer risk in African-American women. Here, we seek to replicate the association by genotyping the G10398A polymorphism in three established population-based case-control studies of breast cancer in African-American women. The 10398A allele was not significantly associated with risk in any of the studies [San Francisco study (542 cases, 282 controls, odds ratio (OR) = 1.73; 95% confidence interval (CI): 0.87, 3.47, P = 0.12); Multiethnic Cohort (391 cases, 460 controls, OR = 1.08; 95% CI: 0.62, 1.86, P = 0.79); CARE/LIFE study (524 cases, 236 controls, OR = 0.81; 95% CI: 0.43, 1.52, P = 0.50)]. When pooling the data across the three studies (1456 cases and 978 controls), no significant association was observed with the 10398A allele (OR = 1.14; 95% CI: 0.80, 1.62, P = 0.47, P heterogeneity=0.30). In analysis of advanced breast cancer cases (n=674), there also was no significant association (OR = 1.18; 95% CI: 0.76, 1.82, P = 0.46). Our results do not support the hypothesis that the mtDNA G10398A polymorphism is a marker of breast cancer risk in African Americans as previously reported.
Germline mutations in the tumor suppressor gene BRCA1 confer an estimated lifetime risk of 56–80% for breast cancer and 15–60% for ovarian cancer. Since the mid 1990’s when BRCA1 was identified, genetic testing has revealed over 3,000 unique germline variants. However, for a significant number of these variants, the effect on protein function is unknown making it difficult to infer the consequences on risks of breast and ovarian cancers. Thus, many individuals undergoing genetic testing for BRCA1 mutations receive test results reporting a variant of uncertain clinical significance (VUS), leading to issues in risk assessment, counseling, and preventive care. Here we describe functional assays for BRCA1 to directly or indirectly assess the impact of a variant on protein conformation or function and how these results can be used to complement genetic data to classify a VUS as to its clinical significance. Importantly, these methods may provide a framework for genome-wide pathogenicity assignment.
genetic testing; functional analysis; BRCA1; breast; ovarian; cancer; VUS
Several common germline variants identified through genome-wide association studies of breast cancer risk in the general population have recently been shown to be associated with breast cancer risk for BRCA1 and/or BRCA2 mutation carriers. When combined, these variants can identify marked differences in the absolute risk of developing breast cancer for mutation carriers, suggesting that additional modifier loci may further enhance individual risk assessment for BRCA1 and BRCA2 mutation carriers. Recently, a common variant on 6p22 (rs9393597) was found to be associated with increased breast cancer risk for BRCA2 mutation carriers [Hazard ratio (HR)=1.55, 95% CI 1.25–1.92, p=6.0×10−5]. This observation was based on data from GWAS studies in which, despite statistical correction for multiple comparisons, the possibility of false discovery remains a concern. Here we report on an analysis of this variant in an additional 6,165 BRCA1 and 3,900 BRCA2 mutation carriers from the Consortium of Investigators of Modifiers of BRCA1/2 (CIMBA). In this replication analysis, rs9393597 was not associated with breast cancer risk for BRCA2 mutation carriers [HR=1.09, 95% CI 0.96–1.24, p=0.18]. No association with ovarian cancer risk for BRCA1 or BRCA2 mutation carriers or with breast cancer risk for BRCA1 mutation carriers was observed. This follow-up study suggests that, contrary to our initial report, this variant is not associated with breast cancer risk among individuals with germline BRCA2 mutations.
BRCA1; BRCA2; genetic modifier; association study
Alcohol consumption increases breast cancer risk, but its effect may be modified by hormone therapy (HT) use, such that exposure to both may be synergistic. Because many women stopped taking HT after mid-2002, it is important to quantify risks associated with alcohol consumption in the context of HT cessation, as these risks may be more relevant to cancer prevention efforts today.
Among 40,680 eligible postmenopausal California Teachers Study cohort participants, 660 were diagnosed with invasive breast cancer before 2010. Multivariate Cox proportional hazards regression models were used to estimate relative risks (RR) and 95% confidence intervals (CI).
Increased breast cancer risk associated with alcohol consumption was observed among postmenopausal women who were current HT users (RR=1.60, 95% CI: 1.13–2.26 and RR=2.11, 95% CI: 1.41–3.15 for <20 and ≥20 g/d of alcohol), with risks being similar by HT preparation. Alcohol did not increase risk among women who had stopped using HT within 3 years or 3–4 years before completing the follow-up questionnaire or in the more distant past. Results were similar for ER+ and ER+PR+ tumors; while power was limited, no increase in risk was observed for ER- tumors.
Following the cessation of HT use, alcohol consumption is not significantly associated with breast cancer risk, although a non-significant increased risk was observed among women who never used HT.
Our findings confirm that concurrent exposure to HT and alcohol has a substantial adverse impact on breast cancer risk. However, after HT cessation, this risk is reduced.
breast cancer; alcohol; hormone therapy; cessation; epidemiology
The occurrence of other autoimmune diseases in celiac disease families has not been previously reported in a North American population. We investigated the familial aggregation of rheumatoid arthritis (RA), juvenile rheumatoid arthritis/juvenile idiopathic arthritis (JRA/JIA), hypothyroidism, insulin dependent diabetes mellitus (IDDM), and alopecia areata (AA) among individuals in families with celiac disease (CD). Family history information, obtained from questionnaires from the University of California Irvine Celiac Disease study, was reviewed for reports of RA, JRA/JIA, hypothyroidism, IDDM, and AA in celiac disease cases and their first-degree relatives. Reports of disease were compared with prevalence data from the literature and analyzed by calculating the standardized ratio (SR) with 95% confidence limits. We analyzed: 1) subjects with confirmed celiac disease or dermatitis herpetiformis (205 probands and 203 affected first-degree relatives) and 2) first-degree relatives of celiac disease cases (n=1,272). We found a significantly increased number of cases, relative to the expected number, of IDDM in both groups and hypothyroidism among subjects with celiac disease. JRA/JIA was increased among first-degree relatives of celiacs. These results indicate that the presence of IDDM within our celiac disease families may be due to shared genetic susceptibility predisposing to these diseases or autoimmune diseases in general.
autoimmune disease; celiac disease
Alcohol consumption increases the risk of breast cancer among women in the general population, but its effect on women who carry a BRCA gene mutation is unclear. We conducted a case-control study of 1925 matched pairs of predominantly premenopausal women who carry a BRCA1 or a BRCA2 mutation. Information on current alcohol consumption was obtained from a questionnaire administered during the course of genetic counselling or at the time of enrolment. A modest inverse association between breast cancer and reported current alcohol consumption was observed among women with a BRCA1 mutation (OR = 0.82, 95% CI 0.70–0.96), but not among women with a BRCA2 mutation (OR = 1.00; 95% CI 0.71–1.41). Compared to non-drinkers, exclusive consumption of wine was associated with a significant reduction in the risk of breast cancer among BRCA1 carriers (p-trend = 0.01). Alcohol consumption does not appear to increase breast cancer risk in women carrying a BRCA gene mutation.
BRCA1; BRCA2; Alcohol; Breast cancer; Case-control; Wine
We conducted a genome-wide association study of male breast cancer using 823 cases and 2,795 controls of European ancestry with validation in independent sample sets totalling 438 cases and 474 controls. A novel variant in RAD51B (14q24.1) was significantly associated with male breast cancer risk (P = 3.02 ×10−13, odds ratio (OR) = 1.57). TOX3 (16q12.1) was also a susceptibility locus (P = 3.87 ×10−15, OR = 1.50).
Women with a BRCA1 mutation face a high lifetime risk of breast cancer. It is unknown to what extent environmental factors modify the inherent genetic risk. If women from different countries, but with similar mutations, experience different levels of cancer risk, non-genetic risk modifiers are likely to be present. Study subjects were a cohort of 1477 women with a BRCA1 mutation, from Canada (n = 358), the United States (n = 256) and Poland (n = 863). The women were followed for a mean of 4.3 years and 130 incident cases of breast cancer were recorded. Annual cancer incidence rates were calculated, and based on these, penetrance curves were constructed for women from North America and Poland. In a Cox proportional hazards model, residence in Poland, versus North America, was associated with an adjusted hazard ratio of 0.54 (95% CI 0.34-0.86; p = 0.01). The risk of breast cancer to age 70 was estimated to be 49% for women from Poland and 72% for women from North America. Among women with BRCA1 mutations, the risk of breast cancer in women who reside in Poland is less than that of women who reside in North America. The reasons for the difference are unknown, but this observation suggests that environmental factors or genetic modifiers are important in determining risk.
BRCA1; breast cancer; penetrance
Mutations in BRCA1/2 dramatically increase the risk of both breast and ovarian cancers. Three mutations in these genes (185delAG, 5382insC, and 6174delT) occur at high frequency in Ashkenazi Jews. We evaluated how these common Jewish mutations (CJMs) affect cancer risks and risk reduction.
Our cohort comprised 4,649 women with disease-associated BRCA1/2 mutations from 22 centers in the Prevention and Observation of Surgical End Points Consortium. Of these women, 969 were self-identified Jewish women. Cox proportional hazards models were used to estimate breast and ovarian cancer risks, as well as risk reduction from risk-reducing salpingo-oophorectomy (RRSO), by CJM and self-identified Jewish status.
Ninety-one percent of Jewish BRCA1/2-positive women carried a CJM. Jewish women were significantly more likely to undergo RRSO than non-Jewish women (54% v 41%, respectively; odds ratio, 1.87; 95% CI, 1.44 to 2.42). Relative risks of cancer varied by CJM, with the relative risk of breast cancer being significantly lower in 6174delT mutation carriers than in non-CJM BRCA2 carriers (hazard ratio, 0.35; 95% CI, 0.18 to 0.69). No significant difference was seen in cancer risk reduction after RRSO among subgroups.
Consistent with previous results, risks for breast and ovarian cancer varied by CJM in BRCA1/2 carriers. In particular, 6174delT carriers had a lower risk of breast cancer. This finding requires additional confirmation in larger prospective and population-based cohort studies before being integrated into clinical care.
Germ-line variants in the 3′ untranslated region (3′UTR) of cancer genes disrupting microRNA (miRNA) regulation have recently been associated with cancer risk. A variant in the 3′UTR of the KRAS oncogene, referred to as the KRAS-variant, is associated with both cancer risk and altered tumor biology. Here we test the hypothesis that the KRAS-variant can act as a biomarker of outcome in epithelial ovarian cancer (EOC), and investigate the cause of altered outcome in KRAS-variant positive EOC patients. As this variant appears to be associated with tumor biology, we additionally test the hypothesis that this variant can be directly targeted to impact cell survival.
EOC patients with complete clinical data were genotyped for the KRAS-variant and analyzed for outcome (n=536), response to neoadjuvant chemotherapy (n=125), and platinum resistance (n=306). Outcome was separately analyzed for women with known BRCA mutations (n=79). Gene expression was analyzed on a subset of tumors with available tissue. Cell lines were employed to confirm altered sensitivity to chemotherapy with the KRAS-variant. The KRAS-variant was directly targeted through siRNA/miRNA oligonucleotides in cell lines and survival was measured.
Post-menopausal EOC patients with the KRAS-variant were significantly more likely to die of ovarian cancer by multivariate analysis (HR=1.67, 95% CI=1.09–2.57, p=0.019, n=279). Possibly explaining this finding, EOC patients with the KRAS-variant were significantly more likely to be platinum resistant (OR=3.18, CI=1.31–7.72, p=0.0106, n=291). Additionally, direct targeting of the KRAS-variant led to a significant reduction in EOC cell growth and survival in vitro.
These findings confirm the importance of the KRAS-variant in EOC, and indicate that the KRAS-variant is a biomarker of poor outcome in EOC likely due to platinum resistance. In addition, this work supports the hypothesis that these tumors have continued dependence on such 3′UTR lesions, and that direct targeting may be a viable future treatment approach.
Platinum resistance; KRAS-variant; ovarian cancer; outcome
Klotho (KL) is a putative tumor suppressor gene in breast and pancreatic cancers located at chromosome 13q12. A functional sequence variant of Klotho (KL-VS) was previously reported to modify breast cancer risk in Jewish BRCA1 mutation carriers. The effect of this variant on breast and ovarian cancer risks in non-Jewish BRCA1/BRCA2 mutation carriers has not been reported. The KL-VS variant was genotyped in women of European ancestry carrying a BRCA mutation: 5,741 BRCA1 mutation carriers (2,997 with breast cancer, 705 with ovarian cancer, and 2,039 cancer free women) and 3,339 BRCA2 mutation carriers (1,846 with breast cancer, 207 with ovarian cancer, and 1,286 cancer free women) from 16 centers. Genotyping was accomplished using TaqMan® allelic discrimination or matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization time-of-flight mass spectrometry. Data were analyzed within a retrospective cohort approach, stratified by country of origin and Ashkenazi Jewish origin. The per-allele hazard ratio (HR) for breast cancer was 1.02 (95% CI 0.93–1.12, P = 0.66) for BRCA1 mutation carriers and 0.92 (95% CI 0.82–1.04, P = 0.17) for BRCA2 mutation carriers. Results remained unaltered when analysis excluded prevalent breast cancer cases. Similarly, the per-allele HR for ovarian cancer was 1.01 (95% CI 0.84–1.20, P = 0.95) for BRCA1 mutation carriers and 0.9 (95% CI 0.66–1.22, P = 0.45) for BRCA2 mutation carriers. The risk did not change when carriers of the 6174delT mutation were excluded. There was a lack of association of the KL-VS Klotho variant with either breast or ovarian cancer risk in BRCA1 and BRCA2 mutation carriers.
Breast cancer; Ovarian cancer-Klotho; BRCA; Modifier gene
Common genetic variants contribute to the observed variation in breast cancer risk for BRCA2 mutation carriers; those known to date have all been found through population-based genome-wide association studies (GWAS). To comprehensively identify breast cancer risk modifying loci for BRCA2 mutation carriers, we conducted a deep replication of an ongoing GWAS discovery study. Using the ranked P-values of the breast cancer associations with the imputed genotype of 1.4 M SNPs, 19,029 SNPs were selected and designed for inclusion on a custom Illumina array that included a total of 211,155 SNPs as part of a multi-consortial project. DNA samples from 3,881 breast cancer affected and 4,330 unaffected BRCA2 mutation carriers from 47 studies belonging to the Consortium of Investigators of Modifiers of BRCA1/2 were genotyped and available for analysis. We replicated previously reported breast cancer susceptibility alleles in these BRCA2 mutation carriers and for several regions (including FGFR2, MAP3K1, CDKN2A/B, and PTHLH) identified SNPs that have stronger evidence of association than those previously published. We also identified a novel susceptibility allele at 6p24 that was inversely associated with risk in BRCA2 mutation carriers (rs9348512; per allele HR = 0.85, 95% CI 0.80–0.90, P = 3.9×10−8). This SNP was not associated with breast cancer risk either in the general population or in BRCA1 mutation carriers. The locus lies within a region containing TFAP2A, which encodes a transcriptional activation protein that interacts with several tumor suppressor genes. This report identifies the first breast cancer risk locus specific to a BRCA2 mutation background. This comprehensive update of novel and previously reported breast cancer susceptibility loci contributes to the establishment of a panel of SNPs that modify breast cancer risk in BRCA2 mutation carriers. This panel may have clinical utility for women with BRCA2 mutations weighing options for medical prevention of breast cancer.
Women who carry BRCA2 mutations have an increased risk of breast cancer that varies widely. To identify common genetic variants that modify the breast cancer risk associated with BRCA2 mutations, we have built upon our previous work in which we examined genetic variants across the genome in relation to breast cancer risk among BRCA2 mutation carriers. Using a custom genotyping platform with 211,155 genetic variants known as single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs), we genotyped 3,881 women who had breast cancer and 4,330 women without breast cancer, which represents the largest possible, international collection of BRCA2 mutation carriers. We identified that a SNP located at 6p24 in the genome was associated with lower risk of breast cancer. Importantly, this SNP was not associated with breast cancer in BRCA1 mutation carriers or in a general population of women, indicating that the breast cancer association with this SNP might be specific to BRCA2 mutation carriers. Combining this BRCA2-specific SNP with 13 other breast cancer risk SNPs also known to modify risk in BRCA2 mutation carriers, we were able to derive a risk prediction model that could be useful in helping women with BRCA2 mutations weigh their risk-reduction strategy options.
We previously reported significant associations between genetic variants in insulin receptor substrate 1 (IRS1) and breast cancer risk in women carrying BRCA1 mutations. The objectives of this study were to investigate whether the IRS1 variants modified ovarian cancer risk and were associated with breast cancer risk in a larger cohort of BRCA1 and BRCA2 mutation carriers.
IRS1 rs1801123, rs1330645, and rs1801278 were genotyped in samples from 36 centers in the Consortium of Investigators of Modifiers of BRCA1/2 (CIMBA). Data were analyzed by a retrospective cohort approach modeling the associations with breast and ovarian cancer risks simultaneously. Analyses were stratified by BRCA1 and BRCA2 status and mutation class in BRCA1 carriers.
Rs1801278 (Gly972Arg) was associated with ovarian cancer risk for both BRCA1 [Hazard ratio (HR) = 1.43; 95% CI: 1.06–1.92; p = 0.019] and BRCA2 mutation carriers (HR=2.21; 95% CI: 1.39–3.52, p=0.0008). For BRCA1 mutation carriers, the breast cancer risk was higher in carriers with class 2 mutations than class 1 (mutations (class 2 HR=1.86, 95% CI: 1.28–2.70; class 1 HR=0.86, 95%CI:0.69–1.09; p-for difference=0.0006). Rs13306465 was associated with ovarian cancer risk in BRCA1 class 2 mutation carriers (HR = 2.42; p = 0.03).
The IRS1 Gly972Arg SNP, which affects insulin-like growth factor and insulin signaling, modifies ovarian cancer risk in BRCA1 and BRCA2 mutation carriers and breast cancer risk in BRCA1 class 2 mutation carriers.
These findings may prove useful for risk prediction for breast and ovarian cancers in BRCA1 and BRCA2 mutation carriers.
Breast cancer; Ovarian cancer; BRCA1 and BRCA2 mutation carriers; insulin receptor substrate 1; Insulin-like growth factor /insulin (IGF/INS) signaling