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1.  Pooling prospective studies to investigate the etiology of second cancers 
Background
With over 13 million cancer survivors in the United States today, second cancers are of rapidly growing importance. However, data on non-treatment risk factors for second cancers are sparse. We explored the feasibility of pooling data from cohort studies of cancer incidence to investigate second cancer etiology.
Methods
We combined data from five prospective studies including more than 800,000 individuals. We compared study designs and populations; evaluated availability of and ability to harmonize risk factor data; compared incidence and survival for common first primary malignancies and incidence of second primary malignancies; and estimated sample size requirements.
Results
Overall, 96,513 incident, first primary malignancies were diagnosed during 1985–2009. Incidence rates and survival following the first primary varied among the cohorts, but most of the heterogeneity could be explained by characteristics of the study populations (age, sex, smoking, and screening rates). 7,890 second primary cancers (excluding original primary site) were identified, yielding sufficient statistical power (≥80%) for detecting modest associations with risk of all second cancers among survivors of common first primary malignancies (e.g., colorectal cancer); however, there were insufficient events for studying survivors of rarer cancers or identifying risk factors for specific second cancers.
Conclusions
Pooling data from cohort studies to investigate non-treatment risk factors for second primary cancers appears feasible but there are important methodological issues - some of which are barriers to specific research questions - that require special attention.
Impact
Increased understanding of non-treatment risk factors for second cancers will provide valuable prevention and surveillance information.
doi:10.1158/1055-9965.EPI-14-0191
PMCID: PMC4119533  PMID: 24832874
2.  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.
doi:10.1158/0008-5472.CAN-14-0459
PMCID: PMC4119534  PMID: 24853549
Leukocytes; Lung cancer; Prospective; Telomeres
3.  Genome-wide interaction study of smoking and bladder cancer risk 
Carcinogenesis  2014;35(8):1737-1744.
Summary
Our GWAS of smoking and bladder cancer risk based on data from 5,424 cases and 10,162 controls suggest that exploring additive and multiplicative gene–environment interactions can identify novel susceptibility loci that are associated with risk for different subgroups.
Bladder cancer is a complex disease with known environmental and genetic risk factors. We performed a genome-wide interaction study (GWAS) of smoking and bladder cancer risk based on primary scan data from 3002 cases and 4411 controls from the National Cancer Institute Bladder Cancer GWAS. Alternative methods were used to evaluate both additive and multiplicative interactions between individual single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) and smoking exposure. SNPs with interaction P values < 5 × 10− 5 were evaluated further in an independent dataset of 2422 bladder cancer cases and 5751 controls. We identified 10 SNPs that showed association in a consistent manner with the initial dataset and in the combined dataset, providing evidence of interaction with tobacco use. Further, two of these novel SNPs showed strong evidence of association with bladder cancer in tobacco use subgroups that approached genome-wide significance. Specifically, rs1711973 (FOXF2) on 6p25.3 was a susceptibility SNP for never smokers [combined odds ratio (OR) = 1.34, 95% confidence interval (CI) = 1.20–1.50, P value = 5.18 × 10− 7]; and rs12216499 (RSPH3-TAGAP-EZR) on 6q25.3 was a susceptibility SNP for ever smokers (combined OR = 0.75, 95% CI = 0.67–0.84, P value = 6.35 × 10− 7). In our analysis of smoking and bladder cancer, the tests for multiplicative interaction seemed to more commonly identify susceptibility loci with associations in never smokers, whereas the additive interaction analysis identified more loci with associations among smokers—including the known smoking and NAT2 acetylation interaction. Our findings provide additional evidence of gene–environment interactions for tobacco and bladder cancer.
doi:10.1093/carcin/bgu064
PMCID: PMC4123644  PMID: 24662972
4.  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.
doi:10.1038/ncomms6751
PMCID: PMC4287989  PMID: 25569183
5.  A large cohort study of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs and renal cell carcinoma incidence in the National Institutes of Health–AARP Diet and Health Study 
Cancer causes & control : CCC  2013;24(10):1865-1873.
Aim
Existing epidemiologic evidence for the association between nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) and renal cell carcinoma (RCC) risk is inconsistent.
Methods
We investigated the association between the use of aspirin and nonaspirin NSAIDs and RCC risk in the National Institutes of Health–American Association of Retired Persons (AARP) Diet and Health Study, for which 298,468 AARP members free of cancer, aged 50–71 years, completed a survey on use of NSAIDs (1996–1997). Multivariate Cox proportional hazards models were used to estimate the hazard ratio (HR).
Results
The state cancer registry and mortality index linkage identified 1,084 incident RCC cases through 31 December 2006. No statistically significant associations between the use of aspirin or nonaspirin NSAIDs and RCC risk were found. Compared to nonuse of any NSAIDs, the multivariate-adjusted HRs were 0.95 (95 % CI 0.75–1.21) and 0.93 (95 % CI 0.68–1.26) for monthly use of aspirin and nonaspirin NSAIDs, respectively, 0.92 (95 % CI: 0.69-1.23) and 1.11 (95 % CI: 0.76-1.62) for weekly use, 0.87 (95 % CI: 0.69-1.11) and 1.06 (95 % CI: 0.75-1.48) for daily use; and 0.95 (95 % CI 0.78–1.14) for the use of both aspirin and nonaspirin NSAIDs. We found some suggestions of an increased risk of RCC associated with frequent NSAID use among participants who were <63 years and a reduced risk associated with aspirin use among those ≥63 years. No significant associations were found in other stratified analyses by gender, BMI, smoking, history of diabetes, or history of hypertension.
Conclusion
RCC risk was not significantly associated with NSAID use overall. The difference in association by age needs to be explored further.
doi:10.1007/s10552-013-0263-4
PMCID: PMC4486047  PMID: 23868221
Anti-inflammatory agents/nonsteroidal; Carcinoma/renal cell; NIH–AARP; Cohort studies
7.  Pathologic validation of renal cell carcinoma histology in the Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results program☆ 
Urologic oncology  2013;32(1):23.e9-23.13.
Purpose
The Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results (SEER) program is an important epidemiologic research tool to study cancer. No information is available on its pathologic accuracy for renal cell carcinoma (RCC).
Methods
Central pathology review was analyzed as a part of the United States Kidney Cancer Study. Cases previously identified through the Detroit SEER registry were reviewed. The sensitivity and specificity, and positive and negative predictive values were calculated for each SEER-assigned subtype, with the central review assignments used as the reference.
Results
Of the 498 cases included in this study, 490 (98.5%) were confirmed to be RCC. The overall agreement for histology was 78.2% (k = 0.55); however, individual cases were frequently reclassified. The sensitivity and specificity for SEER-assigned clear cell RCC were 79.1% and 88.1%, respectively, when based solely on the ICD-O-3 morphology code 8310 (n = 310), and 99.2% and 80.5% when 8312 (RCC not otherwise specified; n = 41) was also assumed to be clear cell. Although RCC not otherwise specified is frequently grouped with clear cell, only 78.1% had this histology. Assignments of papillary and chromophobe RCC had comparable sensitivities (73.5% and 72.4%, respectively) and specificities (97.5% and 97.6%). Positive predictive values for clear cell (excluding/including 8312), papillary, and chromophobe RCC were 95.5%/93.5%, 85.9%, and 65.6%, respectively.
Conclusions
Our findings confirm that nearly all RCC cases are correctly classified in SEER. The positive predictive value was higher for clear cell RCC than for papillary or chromophobe RCC, suggesting that pathologic confirmation may be warranted for studies of non–clear cell tumors. Published by Elsevier Inc.
doi:10.1016/j.urolonc.2012.08.011
PMCID: PMC4435970  PMID: 23453468
RCC; SEER; Histology; Pathology; Concordance; Accuracy
8.  A nested case–control study of leukocyte mitochondrial DNA copy number and renal cell carcinoma in the Prostate, Lung, Colorectal and Ovarian Cancer Screening Trial 
Carcinogenesis  2014;35(5):1028-1031.
Summary
This study reports the first prospective evidence that high leukocyte mtDNA copy number is associated with increased future risk of RCC, suggesting that oxidative DNA damage and mitochondrial dysfunction may contribute to renal carcinogenesis.
Mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) is vulnerable to mutations, and the number of copies of mtDNA per cell may increase to compensate for DNA damage. Case–control studies have reported associations between altered mtDNA copy number and risk of renal cell carcinoma (RCC); however, this association has not been investigated prospectively. We conducted a nested case–control study (252 cases and 504 controls) of RCC risk in relation to pre-diagnostic leukocyte mtDNA copy number in the Prostate, Lung, Colorectal and Ovarian Cancer Screening Trial. mtDNA copy number was measured in triplicate using a fluorescence-based quantitative PCR assay; samples from 22 cases and 36 controls could not be assayed, leaving 230 cases and 468 controls for analysis. Odds ratios (ORs) and 95% confidence intervals (CIs) were estimated using unconditional logistic regression. High mtDNA copy number was associated with an increased risk of RCC, both overall (highest quartile versus lowest: OR = 2.0, 95% CI = 1.2–3.2; P trend = 0.002) and among cases diagnosed ≥6 years after blood collection (OR = 2.6, 95% CI = 1.4–5.0; P trend = 0.003). These findings did not differ significantly by sex, body mass index, history of hypertension or smoking status (P interaction ≥ 0.3). Results of this study suggest that high pre-diagnostic leukocyte mtDNA copy number, a suspected marker of oxidative DNA damage and mitochondrial dysfunction, is associated with increased future RCC risk.
doi:10.1093/carcin/bgt495
PMCID: PMC4004202  PMID: 24398668
9.  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.
doi:10.1038/ng.3105
PMCID: PMC4213349  PMID: 25261932
10.  Common Variation at 1q24.1 (ALDH9A1) Is a Potential Risk Factor for Renal Cancer 
PLoS ONE  2015;10(3):e0122589.
So far six susceptibility loci for renal cell carcinoma (RCC) have been discovered by genome-wide association studies (GWAS). To identify additional RCC common risk loci, we performed a meta-analysis of published GWAS (totalling 2,215 cases and 8,566 controls of Western-European background) with imputation using 1000 Genomes Project and UK10K Project data as reference panels and followed up the most significant association signals [22 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) and 3 indels in eight genomic regions] in 383 cases and 2,189 controls from The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA). A combined analysis identified a promising susceptibility locus mapping to 1q24.1 marked by the imputed SNP rs3845536 (Pcombined =2.30x10-8). Specifically, the signal maps to intron 4 of the ALDH9A1 gene (aldehyde dehydrogenase 9 family, member A1). We further evaluated this potential signal in 2,461 cases and 5,081 controls from the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) GWAS of RCC cases and controls from multiple European regions. In contrast to earlier findings no association was shown in the IARC series (P=0.94; Pcombined =2.73x10-5). While variation at 1q24.1 represents a potential risk locus for RCC, future replication analyses are required to substantiate our observation.
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0122589
PMCID: PMC4380462  PMID: 25826619
11.  Multilevel-analysis identify a cis-expression quantitative trait locus associated with risk of renal cell carcinoma 
Oncotarget  2015;6(6):4097-4109.
We conducted multilevel analyses to identify potential susceptibility loci for renal cell carcinoma (RCC), which may be overlooked in traditional genome-wide association studies (GWAS). A gene set enrichment analysis was performed utilizing a GWAS dataset comprised of 894 RCC cases and 1,516 controls using GenGen, SNP ratio test, and ALIGATOR. The antigen processing and presentation pathway was consistently significant (P = 0.001, = 0.004, and < 0.001, respectively). Versatile gene-based association study approach was applied to the top-ranked pathway and identified the driven genes. By comparing the expression of the genes in RCC tumor and adjacent normal tissues, we observed significant overexpression of HLA genes in tumor tissues, which was also supported by public databases. We sought to validate genetic variants in antigen processing and presentation pathway in an independent GWAS dataset comprised of 1,311 RCC cases and 3,424 control subjects from the National Cancer Institute; one SNP, rs1063355, was significant in both populations (Pmeta-analysis = 9.15 × 10−4, Pheterogeneity = 0.427). Strong correlation indicated that rs1063355 was a cis-expression quantitative trait loci which associated with HLA-DQB1 expression (Spearman's rank r = −0.59, p = 5.61 × 10−6). The correlation was further validated using a public dataset. Our results highlighted the role of immune-related pathway and genes in the etiology of RCC.
PMCID: PMC4414175  PMID: 25784652
RCC; GWAS; GSEA; eQTL
12.  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.
doi:10.1038/ncomms6751
PMCID: PMC4287989  PMID: 25569183
13.  Hysterectomy and Kidney Cancer Risk: a Meta-Analysis 
Recent cohort findings suggest that women who undergo a hysterectomy have an elevated relative risk of kidney cancer, although evidence from past studies has been inconsistent. We conducted a systematic review and meta-analysis of published cohort and case-control studies to summarize the epidemiologic evidence investigating hysterectomy and kidney cancer. Studies published from 1950 through 2012 were identified through a search of PubMed and of references from relevant publications. Meta-analyses were conducted using random-effects models to estimate summary relative risks (SRRs) and 95% confidence intervals (CIs) for hysterectomy, age at hysterectomy (<45, 45+ years), and time since hysterectomy (<10, 10+ years). The SRR for hysterectomy and kidney cancer for all published studies (7 cohort, 6 case-control) was 1.29 (95% CI, 1.16 to 1.43), with no evidence of between-study heterogeneity or publication bias. The summary effect was slightly weaker, although still significant, for cohorts (SRR, 1.26; 95% CI, 1.11 to 1.42) compared to case-control findings (1.37; 95% CI, 1.09 to 1.73), and was observed irrespective of age at hysterectomy, time since the procedure, and model adjustment for body mass index, smoking status and hypertension. Women undergoing a hysterectomy have an approximate 30% increased relative risk of subsequent kidney cancer. Additional research is needed to elucidate the biological mechanisms underlying this association.
doi:10.1002/ijc.28352
PMCID: PMC3834077  PMID: 23818138
hysterectomy; kidney cancer; meta-analysis
14.  A genome-wide association study of renal cell carcinoma among African Americans 
Genome-wide association studies (GWAS) of renal cell carcinoma (RCC) in populations of European ancestry have identified four susceptibility loci. No GWAS has been conducted among African Americans (AAs), who experience a higher incidence of RCC. We conducted a GWAS in which we analyzed 1,136,723 common single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) among 255 cases and 375 controls of African ancestry, and further investigated 16 SNPs in a replication set (140 cases, 543 controls). The 12p11.23 variant rs10771279, located 77kb from the European-ancestry RCC marker rs718314, was associated with RCC risk in the GWAS (P=1.2 × 10−7) but did not replicate (P=0.99). Consistent with European-ancestry findings, the A allele of rs7105934 on 11q13.3 was associated with decreased risk [odds ratio (OR)=0.76, 95% confidence interval (CI)=0.64–0.91; P=0.0022]. The frequency of this allele was higher than that observed in the European-ancestry GWAS (0.56 and 0.07 respectively among controls). The rs7105934 association was stronger for clear cell RCC (ccRCC: OR=0.56; P=7.4 × 10−7) and absent for cases of other or unknown histology (OR=1.02; P=0.86). Analyses of rs7105934 by subtype among European-ancestry participants from these studies yielded similar findings (ORs 0.69 and 0.92 respectively). This study provides, to our knowledge, the first evidence that rs7105934 is an RCC susceptibility locus among AAs. Our finding that the association with this SNP may be specific to ccRCC is novel and requires additional investigation. Additional investigation of rs10771279 and other suggestive GWAS findings is also needed.
doi:10.1158/1055-9965.EPI-13-0818
PMCID: PMC3901793  PMID: 24220910
15.  Personal history of diabetes, genetic susceptibility to diabetes, and risk of brain glioma: a pooled analysis of observational studies 
Background
Brain glioma is a relatively rare and fatal malignancy in adulthood with few known risk factors. Some observational studies have reported inverse associations between diabetes and subsequent glioma risk, but possible mechanisms are unclear.
Methods
We conducted a pooled analysis of original data from five nested case-control studies and two case-control studies from the U.S. and China that included 962 glioma cases and 2,195 controls. We examined self-reported diabetes history in relation to glioma risk, as well as effect modification by seven glioma risk-associated single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs). We also examined the associations between 13 diabetes risk-associated SNPs, identified from genome-wide association studies, and glioma risk. Odds ratios (ORs) and 95% confidence intervals (CIs) were calculated using multivariable-adjusted logistic regression models.
Results
We observed a 42% reduced risk of glioma for individuals with a history of diabetes (OR=0.58, 95% CI: 0.40–0.84). The association did not differ by sex, study design, or after restricting to glioblastoma, the most common histological sub-type. We did not observe any significant per-allele trends among the 13 diabetes-related SNPs examined in relation to glioma risk.
Conclusion
These results support an inverse association between diabetes history and glioma risk. The role of genetic susceptibility to diabetes cannot be excluded, and should be pursued in future studies together with other factors that might be responsible for the diabetes-glioma association.
Impact
These data suggest the need for studies that can evaluate, separately, the association between type 1 and type 2 diabetes and subsequent risk of adult glioma.
doi:10.1158/1055-9965.EPI-13-0913
PMCID: PMC3947107  PMID: 24220915
diabetes mellitus; brain cancer; glioma; cancer; epidemiology
16.  Telomere Length and Risk of Glioma 
Cancer epidemiology  2013;37(6):935-938.
Background
Telomere length in blood or buccal cell DNA has been associated with risk of various cancers. Glioma can be a highly malignant brain tumor and has few known risk factors. Genetic variants in or near RTEL1 and TERT, key components of telomere biology, are associated with glioma risk. Therefore, we evaluated the association between relative telomere length (RTL) and glioma in a prospective study.
Materials and Methods
We performed a nested case-control study within the Prostate, Lung, Colorectal, and Ovarian (PLCO) Cancer Screening Trial. RTL was determined by quantitative PCR on blood or buccal cell DNA obtained at least two years prior to diagnosis from 101 individuals with glioma cases. Healthy controls (n=198) were matched to cases (2:1) on age, gender, smoking status, calendar year, and DNA source. Conditional logistic regression was used to investigate the association between RTL and glioma.
Results
As expected, RTL declined with increasing age in both cases and controls. There was no statistically significant association between RTL and glioma overall. An analysis stratified by gender suggested that short RTL (1st tertile) in males was associated with glioma (odds ratio, [OR] = 2.29, 95% confidence interval [CI] 1.02-5.11); this association was not observed for females (OR=0.41, 95% CI 0.14-1.17).
Conclusions
This prospective study did not identify significant associations between RTL and glioma risk, but there may be gender-specific differences. Larger, prospective studies are needed to evaluate these findings.
doi:10.1016/j.canep.2013.10.002
PMCID: PMC3933265  PMID: 24231251
Telomere length; glioma; epidemiology; cancer risk
17.  IL10 and TNF variants and risk of non-Hodgkin lymphoma among three Asian populations 
Genetic variation in immune-related genes, such as IL10 and TNF, have been associated with the development of non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL) in Caucasian populations. To test the hypothesis that IL10 and TNF polymorphisms may be associated with NHL risk in Asian populations, we genotyped 20 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) within the IL10 and TNF/LTA loci in three independent case–control studies (2635 cases and 4234 controls). IL10 rs1800871, rs1800872, and rs1800896 were genotyped in all three studies, while 5 of the remaining SNPs were genotyped in two studies, and 12 in a single study. IL10 rs1800896 was associated with B cell lymphoma [per-allele odds ratio (OR) = 1.25, 95 % confidence interval (CI) 1.08–1.45; ptrend = 0.003], specifically diffuse large B cell lymphoma (DLBCL) (per-allele OR = 1.29, 95 % CI 1.08–1.53; ptrend = 0.004), as well as T cell lymphoma (per-allele OR = 1.44, 95 % CI 1.13–1.82; ptrend = 0.003). TNF rs1800629, which was genotyped in only two of our studies, was also associated with B cell lymphoma (per-allele OR = 0.77, 95 % CI 0.64–0.91; ptrend = 0.003), specifically DLBCL (per-allele OR = 0.69, 95 % CI 0.55–0.86; ptrend = 0.001). Our findings suggest that genetic variation in IL10 and TNF may also play a role in lymphomagenesis in Asian populations.
doi:10.1007/s12185-013-1345-5
PMCID: PMC4241501  PMID: 23640160
NHL; DLBCL; Subtype; Asia; IL10; TNF
18.  The Prostate, Lung, Colorectal, and Ovarian Cancer Screening Trial and Its Associated Research Resource 
The Prostate, Lung, Colorectal, and Ovarian (PLCO) Cancer Screening Trial is a large-scale research effort conducted by the National Cancer Institute. PLCO offers an example of coordinated research by both the extramural and intramural communities of the National Institutes of Health. The purpose of this article is to describe the PLCO research resource and how it is managed and to assess the productivity and the costs associated with this resource. Such an in-depth analysis of a single large-scale project can shed light on questions such as how large-scale projects should be managed, what metrics should be used to assess productivity, and how costs can be compared with productivity metrics. A comprehensive publication analysis identified 335 primary research publications resulting from research using PLCO data and biospecimens from 2000 to 2012. By the end of 2012, a total of 9679 citations (excluding self-citations) have resulted from this body of research publications, with an average of 29.7 citations per article, and an h index of 45, which is comparable with other large-scale studies, such as the Nurses’ Health Study. In terms of impact on public health, PLCO trial results have been used by the US Preventive Services Task Force in making recommendations concerning prostate and ovarian cancer screening. The overall cost of PLCO was $454 million over 20 years, adjusted to 2011 dollars, with approximately $37 million for the collection, processing, and storage of biospecimens, including blood samples, buccal cells, and pathology tissues.
doi:10.1093/jnci/djt281
PMCID: PMC3888207  PMID: 24115361
19.  A Pooled Analysis of Body Mass Index and Mortality among African Americans 
PLoS ONE  2014;9(11):e111980.
Pooled analyses among whites and East Asians have demonstrated positive associations between all-cause mortality and body mass index (BMI), but studies of African Americans have yielded less consistent results. We examined the association between BMI and all-cause mortality in a sample of African Americans pooled from seven prospective cohort studies: NIH-AARP, 1995–2009; Adventist Health Study 2, 2002–2008; Black Women's Health Study, 1995–2009; Cancer Prevention Study II, 1982–2008; Multiethnic Cohort Study, 1993–2007; Prostate, Lung, Colorectal and Ovarian Screening Trial, 1993–2009; Southern Community Cohort Study, 2002–2009. 239,526 African Americans (including 100,175 never smokers without baseline heart disease, stroke, or cancer), age 30–104 (mean 52) and 71% female, were followed up to 26.5 years (mean 11.7). Hazard ratios (HR) and 95% confidence intervals (CI) for mortality were derived from multivariate Cox proportional hazards models. Among healthy, never smokers (11,386 deaths), HRs (CI) for BMI 25–27.4, 27.5–29.9, 30–34.9, 35–39.9, 40–49.9, and 50–60 kg/m2 were 1.02 (0.92–1.12), 1.06 (0.95–1.18), 1.32 (1.18–1.47), 1.54 (1.29–1.83), 1.93 (1.46–2.56), and 1.93 (0.80–4.69), respectively among men and 1.06 (0.99–1.15), 1.15 (1.06–1.25), 1.24 (1.15–1.34), 1.58 (1.43–1.74), 1.80 (1.60–2.02), and 2.31 (1.74–3.07) respectively among women (reference category 22.5–24.9). HRs were highest among those with the highest educational attainment, longest follow-up, and for cardiovascular disease mortality. Obesity was associated with a higher risk of mortality in African Americans, similar to that observed in pooled analyses of whites and East Asians. This study provides compelling evidence to support public health efforts to prevent excess weight gain and obesity in African Americans.
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0111980
PMCID: PMC4234271  PMID: 25401742
20.  Cigarette, Cigar, and Pipe Smoking and the Risk of Head and Neck Cancers: Pooled Analysis in the International Head and Neck Cancer Epidemiology Consortium 
American Journal of Epidemiology  2013;178(5):679-690.
Cigar and pipe smoking are considered risk factors for head and neck cancers, but the magnitude of effect estimates for these products has been imprecisely estimated. By using pooled data from the International Head and Neck Cancer Epidemiology (INHANCE) Consortium (comprising 13,935 cases and 18,691 controls in 19 studies from 1981 to 2007), we applied hierarchical logistic regression to more precisely estimate odds ratios and 95% confidence intervals for cigarette, cigar, and pipe smoking separately, compared with reference groups of those who had never smoked each single product. Odds ratios for cigar and pipe smoking were stratified by ever cigarette smoking. We also considered effect estimates of smoking a single product exclusively versus never having smoked any product (reference group). Among never cigarette smokers, the odds ratio for ever cigar smoking was 2.54 (95% confidence interval (CI): 1.93, 3.34), and the odds ratio for ever pipe smoking was 2.08 (95% CI: 1.55, 2.81). These odds ratios increased with increasing frequency and duration of smoking (Ptrend ≤ 0.0001). Odds ratios for cigar and pipe smoking were not elevated among ever cigarette smokers. Head and neck cancer risk was elevated for those who reported exclusive cigar smoking (odds ratio = 3.49, 95% CI: 2.58, 4.73) or exclusive pipe smoking (odds ratio = 3.71, 95% CI: 2.59, 5.33). These results suggest that cigar and pipe smoking are independently associated with increased risk of head and neck cancers.
doi:10.1093/aje/kwt029
PMCID: PMC3755640  PMID: 23817919
head and neck neoplasms; smoking
21.  A Pooled Analysis of Alcohol Consumption and Risk of Multiple Myeloma in the International Multiple Myeloma Consortium 
Background
Recent findings suggest that alcohol consumption may reduce risk of multiple myeloma (MM).
Methods
To better understand this relationship, we conducted an analysis of six case-control studies participating in the International Multiple Myeloma Consortium (1,567 cases, 7,296 controls). Summary odds ratios (ORs) and 95% confidence intervals (CI) relating different measures of alcohol consumption and MM risk were computed by unconditional logistic regression with adjustment for age, race, and study center.
Results
Cases were significantly less likely than controls to report ever drinking alcohol (men: OR 0.72, 95% CI 0.59-0.89, women: OR 0.81, 0.68-0.95). The inverse association with MM was stronger when comparing current to never drinkers (men: OR=0.57, 95% CI 0.45-0.72, women: OR=0.55, 95% CI 0.45-0.68), but null among former drinkers. We did not observe an exposure-response relationship with increasing alcohol frequency, duration or cumulative lifetime consumption. Additional adjustment for body mass index, education, or smoking did not affect our results; and the patterns of association were similar for each type of alcohol beverage examined.
Conclusions
Our study is, to our knowledge, the largest of its kind to date, and our findings suggest that alcohol consumption may be associated with reduced risk of MM.
Impact
Prospective studies, especially those conducted as pooled analyses with large sample sizes, are needed to confirm our findings and further explore whether alcohol consumption provides true biologic protection against this rare, highly fatal malignancy.
doi:10.1158/1055-9965.EPI-13-0334
PMCID: PMC3769449  PMID: 23964064
22.  Adult height and head and neck cancer: a pooled analysis within the INHANCE Consortium 
Background
Several epidemiological studies have shown a positive association between adult height and cancer incidence. The only study conducted among women on mouth and pharynx cancer risk, however, reported an inverse association. This study aims to investigate the association between height and the risk of head and neck cancer (HNC) within a large international consortium of HNC.
Methods
We analyzed pooled individual-level data from 24 case-control studies participating in the International Head and Neck Cancer Epidemiology Consortium. Odds Ratios (ORs) and 95% Confidence Intervals (CIs) were estimated separately for men and women for associations between height and HNC risk. Educational level, tobacco smoking, and alcohol consumption were included in all regression models. Stratified analyses by HNC subsites were performed.
Results
This project included 17,666 cases and 28,198 controls. We found an inverse association between height and HNC (adjusted OR per 10 cm height =0.91, 95% CI 0.86–0.95 for men; adjusted OR=0.86, 95% CI 0.79–0.93 for women). In men, the estimated OR did vary by educational level, smoking status, geographic area, and control source. No differences by subsites were detected.
Conclusions
Adult height is inversely associated with HNC risk. As height can be considered a marker of childhood illness and low energy intake, the inverse association is consistent with prior studies showing that HNC occur more frequently among deprived individuals. Further studies designed to elucidate the mechanism of such association would be warranted.
doi:10.1007/s10654-013-9863-2
PMCID: PMC4122122  PMID: 24271556
23.  Association between Class III Obesity (BMI of 40–59 kg/m2) and Mortality: A Pooled Analysis of 20 Prospective Studies 
PLoS Medicine  2014;11(7):e1001673.
In a pooled analysis of 20 prospective studies, Cari Kitahara and colleagues find that class III obesity (BMI of 40–59) is associated with excess rates of total mortality, particularly due to heart disease, cancer, and diabetes.
Please see later in the article for the Editors' Summary
Background
The prevalence of class III obesity (body mass index [BMI]≥40 kg/m2) has increased dramatically in several countries and currently affects 6% of adults in the US, with uncertain impact on the risks of illness and death. Using data from a large pooled study, we evaluated the risk of death, overall and due to a wide range of causes, and years of life expectancy lost associated with class III obesity.
Methods and Findings
In a pooled analysis of 20 prospective studies from the United States, Sweden, and Australia, we estimated sex- and age-adjusted total and cause-specific mortality rates (deaths per 100,000 persons per year) and multivariable-adjusted hazard ratios for adults, aged 19–83 y at baseline, classified as obese class III (BMI 40.0–59.9 kg/m2) compared with those classified as normal weight (BMI 18.5–24.9 kg/m2). Participants reporting ever smoking cigarettes or a history of chronic disease (heart disease, cancer, stroke, or emphysema) on baseline questionnaires were excluded. Among 9,564 class III obesity participants, mortality rates were 856.0 in men and 663.0 in women during the study period (1976–2009). Among 304,011 normal-weight participants, rates were 346.7 and 280.5 in men and women, respectively. Deaths from heart disease contributed largely to the excess rates in the class III obesity group (rate differences = 238.9 and 132.8 in men and women, respectively), followed by deaths from cancer (rate differences = 36.7 and 62.3 in men and women, respectively) and diabetes (rate differences = 51.2 and 29.2 in men and women, respectively). Within the class III obesity range, multivariable-adjusted hazard ratios for total deaths and deaths due to heart disease, cancer, diabetes, nephritis/nephrotic syndrome/nephrosis, chronic lower respiratory disease, and influenza/pneumonia increased with increasing BMI. Compared with normal-weight BMI, a BMI of 40–44.9, 45–49.9, 50–54.9, and 55–59.9 kg/m2 was associated with an estimated 6.5 (95% CI: 5.7–7.3), 8.9 (95% CI: 7.4–10.4), 9.8 (95% CI: 7.4–12.2), and 13.7 (95% CI: 10.5–16.9) y of life lost. A limitation was that BMI was mainly ascertained by self-report.
Conclusions
Class III obesity is associated with substantially elevated rates of total mortality, with most of the excess deaths due to heart disease, cancer, and diabetes, and major reductions in life expectancy compared with normal weight.
Please see later in the article for the Editors' Summary
Editors' Summary
Background
The number of obese people (individuals with an excessive amount of body fat) is increasing rapidly in many countries. Worldwide, according to the Global Burden of Disease Study 2013, more than a third of all adults are now overweight or obese. Obesity is defined as having a body mass index (BMI, an indicator of body fat calculated by dividing a person's weight in kilograms by their height in meters squared) of more than 30 kg/m2 (a 183-cm [6-ft] tall man who weighs more than 100 kg [221 lbs] is obese). Compared to people with a healthy weight (a BMI between 18.5 and 24.9 kg/m2), overweight and obese individuals (who have a BMI between 25.0 and 29.9 kg/m2 and a BMI of 30 kg/m2 or more, respectively) have an increased risk of developing diabetes, heart disease, stroke, and some cancers, and tend to die younger. Because people become unhealthily fat by consuming food and drink that contains more energy (kilocalories) than they need for their daily activities, obesity can be prevented or treated by eating less food and by increasing physical activity.
Why Was This Study Done?
Class III obesity (extreme, or morbid, obesity), which is defined as a BMI of more than 40 kg/m2, is emerging as a major public health problem in several high-income countries. In the US, for example, 6% of adults are now morbidly obese. Because extreme obesity used to be relatively uncommon, little is known about the burden of disease, including total and cause-specific mortality (death) rates, among individuals with class III obesity. Before we can prevent and treat class III obesity effectively, we need a better understanding of the health risks associated with this condition. In this pooled analysis of prospective cohort studies, the researchers evaluate the risk of total and cause-specific death and the years of life lost associated with class III obesity. A pooled analysis analyzes the data from several studies as if the data came from one large study; prospective cohort studies record the characteristics of a group of participants at baseline and follow them to see which individuals develop a specific condition.
What Did the Researchers Do and Find?
The researchers included 20 prospective (mainly US) cohort studies from the National Cancer Institute Cohort Consortium (a partnership that studies cancer by undertaking large-scale collaborations) in their pooled analysis. After excluding individuals who had ever smoked and people with a history of chronic disease, the analysis included 9,564 adults who were classified as class III obese based on self-reported height and weight at baseline and 304,011 normal-weight adults. Among the participants with class III obesity, mortality rates (deaths per 100,000 persons per year) during the 30-year study period were 856.0 and 663.0 in men and women, respectively, whereas the mortality rates among normal-weight men and women were 346.7 and 280.5, respectively. Heart disease was the major contributor to the excess death rate among individuals with class III obesity, followed by cancer and diabetes. Statistical analyses of the pooled data indicate that the risk of all-cause death and death due to heart disease, cancer, diabetes, and several other diseases increased with increasing BMI. Finally, compared with having a normal weight, having a BMI between 40 and 59 kg/m2 resulted in an estimated loss of 6.5 to 13.7 years of life.
What Do These Findings Mean?
These findings indicate that class III obesity is associated with a substantially increased rate of death. Notably, this death rate increase is similar to the increase associated with smoking among normal-weight people. The findings also suggest that heart disease, cancer, and diabetes are responsible for most of the excess deaths among people with class III obesity and that having class III obesity results in major reductions in life expectancy. Importantly, the number of years of life lost continues to increase for BMI values above 50 kg/m2, and beyond this point, the loss of life expectancy exceeds that associated with smoking among normal-weight people. The accuracy of these findings is limited by the use of self-reported height and weight measurements to calculate BMI and by the use of BMI as the sole measure of obesity. Moreover, these findings may not be generalizable to all populations. Nevertheless, these findings highlight the need to develop more effective interventions to combat the growing public health problem of class III obesity.
Additional Information
Please access these websites via the online version of this summary at http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pmed.1001673.
The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention provides information on all aspects of overweight and obesity (in English and Spanish)
The World Health Organization provides information on obesity (in several languages); Malri's story describes the health risks faced by an obese child
The UK National Health Service Choices website provides information about obesity, including a personal story about losing weight
The Global Burden of Disease Study website provides the latest details about global obesity trends
The US Department of Agriculture's ChooseMyPlate.gov website provides a personal healthy eating plan; the Weight-Control Information Network is an information service provided for the general public and health professionals by the US National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (in English and Spanish)
MedlinePlus provides links to other sources of information on obesity (in English and Spanish)
doi:10.1371/journal.pmed.1001673
PMCID: PMC4087039  PMID: 25003901
24.  Joint effects between five identified risk variants, allergy, and autoimmune conditions on glioma risk 
Cancer causes & control : CCC  2013;24(10):1885-1891.
Common variants in two of the five genetic regions recently identified from genome-wide association studies (GWAS) of risk of glioma were reported to interact with a history of allergic symptoms. In a pooled analysis of five epidemiologic studies, we evaluated the association between the five GWAS implicated gene variants and allergies and autoimmune conditions (AIC) on glioma risk (851 adult glioma cases and 3,977 controls). We further evaluated the joint effects between allergies and AIC and these gene variants on glioma risk. Risk estimates were calculated as odds ratios (OR) and 95 % confidence intervals (95 % CI), adjusted for age, gender, and study. Joint effects were evaluated by conducting stratified analyses whereby the risk associations (OR and 95 % CI) with the allergy or autoimmune conditions for glioma were evaluated by the presence or absence of the ‘at-risk’ variant, and estimated p interaction by fitting models with the main effects of allergy or autoimmune conditions and genotype and an interaction (product) term between them. Four of the five SNPs previously reported by others were statistically significantly associated with increased risk of glioma in our study (rs2736100, rs4295627, rs4977756, and rs6010620); rs498872 was not associated with glioma in our study. Reporting any allergies or AIC was associated with reduced risks of glioma (allergy: adjusted OR = 0.71, 95 % CI 0.55–0.91; AIC: adjusted OR = 0.65, 95 % CI 0.47–0.90). We did not observe differential association between allergic or autoimmune conditions and glioma by genotype, and there were no statistically significant p interactions. Stratified analysis by glioma grade (low and high grade) did not suggest risk differences by disease grade. Our results do not provide evidence that allergies or AIC modulate the association between the four GWAS-identified SNPs examined and risk of glioma.
doi:10.1007/s10552-013-0244-7
PMCID: PMC4074857  PMID: 23903690
Single-nucleotide polymorphisms; Glioma; Allergies; Autoimmune conditions; Gene–environment interaction
25.  Trichloroethylene and Cancer 
doi:10.1093/jnci/djt131
PMCID: PMC3687372  PMID: 23723421

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