The x-ray cross complementing group 1 gene (XRCC1) is crucial to proper repair of DNA damage such as single-strand DNA breaks. A non-synonymous polymorphism in XRCC1, 399 G → A, has been shown to reduce effectiveness of such DNA repair and has been associated with the risk of certain cancers. The known risk for glioma from high dose ionizing radiation makes associations between this polymorphism and glioma of particular interest.
A systematic literature review and meta-analysis was conducted to explore the association between XRCC1 399 G → A and glioma. Subgroup analyses by grade, gender, genotyping method, country in which study was conducted, and study size were conducted when data were available and validity of the results were assessed by influence analyses and exploration of potential publication bias.
Six studies were eligible for meta-analysis including data on 2,362 Caucasian glioma cases and 3,085 Caucasian controls. Pooled analysis yielded a significant association between the variant of interest and risk of glioma (OR = 1.17, 95% CI: 1.05-1.30) which was found to be disproportionately driven by a single study. Exclusion of this study, in an influence analysis, produced no statistically significant evidence of association with glioma (OR = 1.10, 95% CI: 0.98-1.23), and no evidence of publication bias.
This meta-analysis does not suggest a major role of the XRCC1 399 G → A polymorphism in influencing risk of glioma among Caucasians. Future studies should report data separately for glioma subtypes to permit stratified analyses for Grade III and Grade IV glioma and examine other polymorphisms in this gene.