As the number of cancer survivors continues to grow, research investigating the factors that affect cancer outcomes, such as disease recurrence, risk of second malignant neoplasms, and the late effects of cancer treatments, becomes ever more important. Numerous epidemiologic studies have investigated factors that affect cancer risk, but far fewer have addressed the extent to which demographic, lifestyle, genomic, clinical, and psychosocial factors influence cancer outcomes. To identify research priorities as well as resources and infrastructure needed to advance the field of cancer outcomes and survivorship research, the National Cancer Institute sponsored a workshop titled “Utilizing Data from Cancer Survivor Cohorts: Understanding the Current State of Knowledge and Developing Future Research Priorities” on November 3, 2011, in Washington, DC. This commentary highlights recent findings presented at the workshop, opportunities to leverage existing data, and recommendations for future research, data, and infrastructure needed to address high priority clinical and research questions. Multidisciplinary teams that include epidemiologists, clinicians, biostatisticians, and bioinformaticists will be essential to facilitate future cancer outcome studies focused on improving clinical care of cancer patients, identifying those at high risk of poor outcomes, and implementing effective interventions to ultimately improve the quality and duration of survival.
Considerable evidence suggests that cigarette smoking is associated with a higher risk of colorectal cancer. What is unclear, however, is the impact of quitting smoking on risk attenuation and whether other risk factors for colorectal cancer modify this association.
We performed a pooled analysis of 8 studies, including 6,796 colorectal cancer cases and 7,770 controls to evaluate the association between cigarette smoking history and colorectal cancer risk, and to investigate potential effect modification by other risk factors.
Current smokers (OR=1.26, 95% CI=1.11–1.43) and former smokers (OR=1.18, 95% CI=1.09–1.27), relative to never smokers, showed higher risks of colorectal cancer. Former smokers remained at higher colorectal cancer risk, relative to never smokers, for up to about 25 years after quitting. The impact of time since quitting varied by cancer subsite: the excess risk due to smoking decreased immediately after quitting for proximal colon and rectal cancer, but not until about 20 years post-quitting for distal colon cancer. Further, we observed borderline statistically significant additive interactions between smoking status and BMI (relative excess risk due to interaction [RERI]=0.15, 95% CI:−0.01–0.31, P=0.06) and significant additive interaction between smoking status and fruit consumption (RERI=0.16, 95% CI: 0.01–0.30, P=0.04).
Colorectal cancer risk remained increased for about 25 years after quitting smoking, and the pattern of decline in risk varied by cancer subsite. BMI and fruit intake modified the risk associated with smoking.
These results contribute to a better understanding of the mechanisms through which smoking impacts colorectal cancer etiology.
smoking; colorectal cancer; smoking status; time since quitting smoking; multiplicative and additive interaction; body mass index; vegetable and fruit intake
The Epidemiology and Genomics Research Program (EGRP) at the National Cancer Institute (NCI) is develop scientific priorities for cancer epidemiology research in the next decade. We would like to engage the research community and other stakeholders in a planning effort that will include a workshop, in December, 2012, to help shape new foci for cancer epidemiology research. To facilitate the process of defining the future of cancer epidemiology, we invite the research community to join in an ongoing Web-based conversation at http://blog-epi.grants.cancer.gov/ to develop priorities and the next generation of high-impact studies.
We propose guidelines to evaluate the cumulative evidence of gene–environment (G × E) interactions in the causation of human cancer. Our approach has its roots in the HuGENet and IARC Monographs evaluation processes for genetic and environmental risk factors, respectively, and can be applied to common chronic diseases other than cancer. We first review issues of definitions of G × E interactions, discovery and modelling methods for G × E interactions, and issues in systematic reviews of evidence for G × E interactions, since these form the foundation for appraising the credibility of evidence in this contentious field. We then propose guidelines that include four steps: (i) score the strength of the evidence for main effects of the (a) environmental exposure and (b) genetic variant; (ii) establish a prior score category and decide on the pattern of interaction to be expected; (iii) score the strength of the evidence for interaction between the environmental exposure and the genetic variant; and (iv) examine the overall plausibility of interaction by combining the prior score and the strength of the evidence and interpret results. We finally apply the scheme to the interaction between NAT2 polymorphism and tobacco smoking in determining bladder cancer risk.
Genetics; environment; interactions; evaluations
Genome-wide association studies (GWAS) have successfully identified a number of single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) associated with colorectal cancer (CRC) risk. However, these susceptibility loci known today explain only a small fraction of the genetic risk. Gene-gene interaction (GxG) is considered to be one source of the missing heritability. To address this, we performed a genome-wide search for pair-wise GxG associated with CRC risk using 8,380 cases and 10,558 controls in the discovery phase and 2,527 cases and 2,658 controls in the replication phase. We developed a simple, but powerful method for testing interaction, which we term the Average Risk Due to Interaction (ARDI). With this method, we conducted a genome-wide search to identify SNPs showing evidence for GxG with previously identified CRC susceptibility loci from 14 independent regions. We also conducted a genome-wide search for GxG using the marginal association screening and examining interaction among SNPs that pass the screening threshold (p<10−4). For the known locus rs10795668 (10p14), we found an interacting SNP rs367615 (5q21) with replication p = 0.01 and combined p = 4.19×10−8. Among the top marginal SNPs after LD pruning (n = 163), we identified an interaction between rs1571218 (20p12.3) and rs10879357 (12q21.1) (nominal combined p = 2.51×10−6; Bonferroni adjusted p = 0.03). Our study represents the first comprehensive search for GxG in CRC, and our results may provide new insight into the genetic etiology of CRC.
In this study, we observed loss of heterozygosity (LOH) in human chromosomal fragment 6q25.1 in sporadic lung cancer patients. LOH was observed in 65% of the 26 lung tumors examined and was narrowed down to a 2.2-Mb region. Single-nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) analysis of genes located within this region identified a candidate gene, termed p34. This gene, also designated as ZC3H12D, C6orf95, FLJ46041, or dJ281H8.1, carries an A/G nonsynonymous SNP at codon 106, which alters the amino acid from lysine to arginine. Nearly 73% of heterozygous lung cancer tissues with LOH and the A/G SNP also exhibited loss of the A allele. In vitro clonogenic and in vivo nude mouse studies showed that overexpression of the A allele exerts tumor suppressor function compared with the G allele. p34 is located within a recently mapped human lung cancer susceptibility locus, and association of the p34 A/G SNP was tested among these families. No significant association between the less frequent G allele and lung cancer susceptibility was found. Our results suggest that p34 may be a novel tumor suppressor gene involved in sporadic lung cancer but it seems not to be the candidate familial lung cancer susceptibility gene linked to chromosomal region 6q23-25.
The use of tyrosine kinase inhibitors (TKI) has yielded great success in treatment of lung adenocarcinomas. However, patients who develop resistance to TKI treatment often acquire a somatic resistance mutation (T790M) located in the catalytic cleft of the epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) enzyme. Recently, a report describing EGFR-T790M as a germ-line mutation suggested that this mutation may be associated with inherited susceptibility to lung cancer. Contrary to previous reports, our analysis indicates that the T790M mutation confers increased Y992 and Y1068 phosphorylation levels. In a human bronchial epithelial cell line, overexpression of EGFR-T790M displayed a growth advantage over wild-type (WT) EGFR. We also screened 237 lung cancer family probands, in addition to 45 bronchoalveolar tumors, and found that none of them contained the EGFR-T790M mutation. Our observations show that EGFR-T790M provides a proliferative advantage with respect to WT EGFR and suggest that the enhanced kinase activity of this mutant is the basis for rare cases of inherited susceptibility to lung cancer.
A common variant on chromosomal region 15q24–25.1, marked by rs1051730, was found to be associated with lung cancer risk. Here, we attempted to confirm the second variant on 15q24–25.1 in several large sporadic lung cancer populations and determined what percentage of additional risk for lung cancer is due to the genetic effect of the second variant. SNPs rs1051730 and rs481134 were genotyped in 2,818 lung cancer cases and 2,766 controls from four populations. Joint analysis of these two variants (rs1051730 and rs481134) on 15q24–25.1 identified three major haplotypes (G_T, A_C, and G_C) and provided stronger evidence for association of 15q24–25.1 with lung cancer (P = 9.72 × 10−9). These two variants represent three levels of risk associated with lung cancer. The most common haplotype G_T is neutral; the haplotype A_C is associated with increased risk for lung cancer with 5.0% higher frequency in cases than in controls [P = 1.68 × 10−7; odds ratio (OR), 1.24; 95% confidence interval (95% CI), 1.14–1.35]; whereas the haplotype G_C is associated with reduced risk for lung cancer with 4.4% lower frequency in cases than in controls (P = 7.39 × 10−7; OR, 0.80; 95% CI, 0.73–0.87). We further showed that these two genetic variants on 15q24–25.1 independently influence lung cancer risk (rs1051730: P = 4.42 × 10−11; OR, 1.60; 95% CI, 1.46–1.74; rs481134: P = 7.01 × 10−4; OR, 0.81; 95% CI, 0.72–0.92). The second variant on 15q24–25.1, marked by rs481134, explains an additional 13.2% of population attributable risk for lung cancer.
The rapid and continuing progress in gene discovery for complex diseases is fuelling interest in the potential application of genetic risk models for clinical and public health practice.The number of studies assessing the predictive ability is steadily increasing, but they vary widely in completeness of reporting and apparent quality.Transparent reporting of the strengths and weaknesses of these studies is important to facilitate the accumulation of evidence on genetic risk prediction.A multidisciplinary workshop sponsored by the Human Genome Epidemiology Network developed a checklist of 25 items recommended for strengthening the reporting of Genetic RIsk Prediction Studies (GRIPS), building on the principles established by prior reporting guidelines.These recommendations aim to enhance the transparency, quality and completeness of study reporting, and thereby to improve the synthesis and application of information from multiple studies that might differ in design, conduct or analysis.
We conducted a genome-wide association study on 969 bladder cancer cases and 957 controls from Texas. For fast-track validation, we evaluated 60 SNPs in three additional US populations and validated the top SNP in nine European populations. A missense variant (rs2294008) in the PSCA gene showed consistent association with bladder cancer in US and European populations. Combining all subjects (6,667 cases, 39,590 controls), the overall P-value was 2.14 × 10−10 and the allelic odds ratio was 1.15 (95% confidence interval 1.10–1.20). rs2294008 alters the start codon and is predicted to cause truncation of nine amino acids from the N-terminal signal sequence of the primary PSCA translation product. In vitro reporter gene assay showed that the variant allele significantly reduced promoter activity. Resequencing of the PSCA genomic region showed that rs2294008 is the only common missense SNP in PSCA. Our data identify rs2294008 as a new bladder cancer susceptibility locus.
Most individuals throughout the Americas are admixed descendants of Native American, European, and African ancestors. Complex historical factors have resulted in varying proportions of ancestral contributions between individuals within and among ethnic groups. We developed a panel of 446 ancestry informative markers (AIMs) optimized to estimate ancestral proportions in individuals and populations throughout Latin America. We used genome-wide data from 953 individuals from diverse African, European, and Native American populations to select AIMs optimized for each of the three main continental populations that form the basis of modern Latin American populations. We selected markers on the basis of locus-specific branch length to be informative, well distributed throughout the genome, capable of being genotyped on widely available commercial platforms, and applicable throughout the Americas by minimizing within-continent heterogeneity. We then validated the panel in samples from four admixed populations by comparing ancestry estimates based on the AIMs panel to estimates based on genome-wide association study (GWAS) data. The panel provided balanced discriminatory power among the three ancestral populations and accurate estimates of individual ancestry proportions (R2>0.9 for ancestral components with significant between-subject variance). Finally, we genotyped samples from 18 populations from Latin America using the AIMs panel and estimated variability in ancestry within and between these populations. This panel and its reference genotype information will be useful resources to explore population history of admixture in Latin America and to correct for the potential effects of population stratification in admixed samples in the region.
Individuals from Latin America are descendants of multiple ancestral populations, primarily Native American, European, and African ancestors. The relative proportions of these ancestries can be estimated using genetic markers, known as ancestry informative markers (AIMs), whose allele frequency varies between the ancestral groups. Once determined, these ancestral proportions can be correlated with normal phenotypes, can be associated with disease, can be used to control for confounding due to population stratification, or can inform on the history of admixture in a population. In this study, we identified a panel of AIMs relevant to Latin American populations, validated the panel by comparing estimates of ancestry using the panel to ancestry determined from genome-wide data, and tested the panel in a diverse set of populations from the Americas. The panel of AIMs produces ancestry estimates that are highly accurate and appropriately controlled for population stratification, and it was used to genotype 18 populations from throughout Latin America. We have made the panel of AIMs available to any researcher interested in estimating ancestral proportions for populations from the Americas.
The third Human Variome Project (HVP) Meeting “Integration and Implementation” was held under UNESCO Patronage in Paris, France, at the UNESCO Headquarters May 10–14, 2010. The major aims of the HVP are the collection, curation, and distribution of all human genetic variation affecting health. The HVP has drawn together disparate groups, by country, gene of interest, and expertise, who are working for the common good with the shared goal of pushing the boundaries of the human variome and collaborating to avoid unnecessary duplication. The meeting addressed the 12 key areas that form the current framework of HVP activities: Ethics; Nomenclature and Standards; Publication, Credit and Incentives; Data Collection from Clinics; Overall Data Integration and Access—Peripheral Systems/Software; Data Collection from Laboratories; Assessment of Pathogenicity; Country Specific Collection; Translation to Healthcare and Personalized Medicine; Data Transfer, Databasing, and Curation; Overall Data Integration and Access—Central Systems; and Funding Mechanisms and Sustainability. In addition, three societies that support the goals and the mission of HVP also held their own Workshops with the view to advance disease-specific variation data collection and utilization: the International Society for Gastrointestinal Hereditary Tumours, the Micronutrient Genomics Project, and the Neurogenetics Consortium.
mutation; variation; genomics; genetic disease
The relative rarity of spinal cord tumors has hampered the study of these uncommon nervous system malignancies. Consequently, the understanding of the fundamental biology and optimal treatment of spinal cord tumors is limited, and these cancers continue to inflict considerable morbidity and mortality in children and adults. As a first step to improving the outcome of patients affected with spinal cord tumors, the National Institutes of Health Office of Rare Diseases Research in cooperation with the National Cancer Institute and the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke convened a workshop to discuss the current status of research and clinical management of these tumors. The overall goal of this meeting was to initiate a process that would eventually translate fundamental basic science research into improved clinical care for this group of patients. Investigational priorities for each of these areas were established, and the opportunities for future multidisciplinary research collaborations were identified.
epidemiology; spinal cord tumor; consortium; outcome; glioma; meningioma; metastasis
The rapid and continuing progress in gene discovery for complex diseases is fueling interest in the potential application of genetic risk models for clinical and public health practice. The number of studies assessing the predictive ability is steadily increasing, but they vary widely in completeness of reporting and apparent quality. Transparent reporting of the strengths and weaknesses of these studies is important to facilitate the accumulation of evidence on genetic risk prediction. A multidisciplinary workshop sponsored by the Human Genome Epidemiology Network developed a checklist of 25 items recommended for strengthening the reporting of Genetic RIsk Prediction Studies (GRIPS), building on the principles established by previous reporting guidelines. These recommendations aim to enhance the transparency, quality and completeness of study reporting, and thereby to improve the synthesis and application of information from multiple studies that might differ in design, conduct or analysis.
The rapid and continuing progress in gene discovery for complex diseases is fuelling interest in the potential application of genetic risk models for clinical and public health practice. The number of studies assessing the predictive ability is steadily increasing, but they vary widely in completeness of reporting and apparent quality. Transparent reporting of the strengths and weaknesses of these studies is important to facilitate the accumulation of evidence on genetic risk prediction. A multidisciplinary workshop sponsored by the Human Genome Epidemiology Network developed a checklist of 25 items recommended for strengthening the reporting of Genetic RIsk Prediction Studies (GRIPS), building on the principles established by prior reporting guidelines. These recommendations aim to enhance the transparency, quality and completeness of study reporting, and thereby to improve the synthesis and application of information from multiple studies that might differ in design, conduct or analysis.
Genetic; Risk prediction; Methodology; Guidelines; Reporting
Genetic factors play important roles in lung cancer susceptibility. In this study, we replicated the association of 5p15.33 and 6p21.33 with familial lung cancer. Taking into account the previously identified genetic susceptibility variants on 6q23-25/RGS17 and 15q24-25.1, we further determined the cumulative association of these four genetic regions and the population attributable risk percent of familial lung cancer they account for.
One hundred ninety-four case patients and 219 cancer-free control subjects from the Genetic Epidemiology of Lung Cancer Consortium were used for the association analysis. Each familial case was chosen from one high-risk lung cancer family that has three or more affected members. Single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNP) on chromosomal regions 5p15.33, 6p21.33, 6q23-25/RGS17, and 15q24-25.1 were assessed for their associations with familial lung cancer. The cumulative association of the four chromosomal regions with familial lung cancer was evaluated with the use of a linear logistic model. Population attributable risk percent was calculated for each SNP using risk ratio.
SNP rs31489 showed the strongest evidence of familial lung cancer association on 5p15.33 (P = 2 × 10−4; odds ratio, 0.57; 95% confidence interval, 0.42-0.77), whereas rs3117582 showed a weak association on 6p21.33 (P = 0.09; odds ratio, 1.47; 95% confidence interval, 0.94-2.31). Analysis of a combination of SNPs from the four regions provided a stronger cumulative association with familial lung cancer (P = 6.70 × 10−6) than any individual SNPs. The risk of lung cancer was increased to 3- to 11-fold among those subjects who had at least one copy of risk allele at each region compared with subjects without any of the risk factors. These four genetic regions contribute to a total of 34.6% of familial lung cancer in smokers.
The SNPs in four chromosomal regions have a cumulative and significant association with familial lung cancer and account for about one-third of the population attributable risk for familial lung cancer.
In a previous study, alpha-1-antitrypsin (A1AT) deficiency alleles were found to be over represented among individuals with microsatellite unstable (MSI-high) colorectal cancers, and this was most significant in former or current smokers. We evaluated this association in a larger case-control study, stratified by microsatellite instability phenotypes. Concordant with prior observations, gender (female) and smoking history were positively associated with colorectal cancers having an MSI-high phenotype. No difference in frequency of A1AT deficiency alleles was found between cases and controls, irrespective of the MSI subtype.
protease inhibitor; microsatellite instability; DNA mismatch repair; smoking
Genomic imprinting refers to a parent-of-origin specific effect on gene expression. At least 1% of genes in the human genome are modulated in this manner. We sought evidence for genomic imprinting in colorectal cancer by studying the ages at diagnosis in the offspring of 2,061 parent-child pairs in which both parent and child were affected by non syndromic colorectal cancer. Families were ascertained through the colon Cancer Family Registry [http://epi.grants.cancer.gov/CFR/] from both population-based and clinic-based sources. We found that the affected offspring of affected fathers were on average younger than offspring of affected mothers (55.8 vs 53.7 years; p=0.0003), but when divided into sons and daughters, this difference was driven entirely by younger age at diagnosis in daughters of affected fathers compared to sons (52.3 years vs 55.1 years; p=0.0004). A younger age at diagnosis in affected daughters of affected fathers was also observable in various subsets including families that met Amsterdam II Criteria, families that did not meet Amsterdam Criteria, and in families with documented normal DNA mismatch repair in tumors. Imprinting effects are not expected to be affected by the sex of the offspring. Possible explanations for these unexpected findings include: 1) an imprinted gene on the pseudoautosomal regions of the X chromosome; 2) an imprinted autosomal gene that affects a sex-specific pathway; or 3) an X-linked gene unmasked because of colonic tissue-specific preferential inactivation of the maternal X chromosome.
imprinting; gender; pseudoautosomal; X-linked
Recent genome-wide association studies have linked the chromosome 15q24-25.1 locus to nicotine addiction and lung cancer susceptibility. To refine the 15q24-25.1 locus, we performed a haplotype-based association analysis of 194 familial lung cases and 219 cancer-free controls from the Genetic Epidemiology of Lung Cancer Consortium (GELCC) collection, and used proliferation and apoptosis analyses to determine which gene(s) in the 15q24-25.1 locus mediates effects on lung cancer cell growth in vitro. We identified two distinct subregions, hapL (P = 3.20 × 10−6) and hapN (P = 1.51 × 10−6), which were significantly associated with familial lung cancer. hapL encompasses IREB2, LOC123688,and PSMA4, and hapN encompasses the three nicotinic acetylcholine receptor subunit genes CHRNA5, CHRNA3,and CHRNB4. Examination of the genes around hapL revealed that PSMA4 plays a role in promoting cancer cell proliferation. PSMA4 mRNA levels were increased in lung tumors compared with normal lung tissues. Down-regulation of PSMA4 expression decreased proteasome activity and induced apoptosis. Proteasome dysfunction leads to many diseases including cancer, and drugs that inhibit proteasome activity show promise as a form of cancer treatment. Genes around hapN were also investigated, but did not show any direct effect on lung cancer cell proliferation. We concluded that PSMA4 is a strong candidate mediator of lung cancer cell growth,and may directly affect lung cancer susceptibility through its modulation of cell proliferation and apoptosis.
The accurate identification and interpretation of germline mutations in mismatch repair genes in colorectal cancer cases is critical for clinical management. Current data suggest that mismatch repair mutations are highly heterogeneous and that many mutations are not detected when conventional DNA sequencing alone is used.
To evaluate the potential of conversion analysis compared with DNA sequencing alone to detect heterogeneous germline mutations in MLH1, MSH2, and MSH6 in colorectal cancer patients.
Design, Setting, and Participants
Multicenter study with patients who participate in the Colon Cancer Family Registry. Mutation analyses were performed in participant samples determined to have a high probability of carrying mismatch repair germline mutations. Samples from a total of 64 hereditary nonpolyposis colorectal cancer cases, 8 hereditary nonpolyposis colorectal cancer–like cases, and 17 cases diagnosed prior to age 50 years were analyzed from June 2002 to June 2003.
Main Outcome Measures
Classification of family members as carriers or noncarriers of germline mutations in MLH1, MSH2, or MSH6; mutation data from conversion analysis compared with genomic DNA sequencing.
Genomic DNA sequencing identified 28 likely deleterious exon mutations, 4 in-frame deletion mutations, 16 missense changes, and 22 putative splice site mutations. Conversion analysis identified all mutations detected by genomic DNA sequencing—plus an additional exon mutation, 12 large genomic deletions, and 1 exon duplication mutation—yielding an increase of 33% (14/42) in diagnostic yield of deleterious mutations. Conversion analysis also showed that 4 of 16 missense changes resulted in exon skipping in transcripts and that 17 of 22 putative splice site mutations affected splicing or mRNA transcript stability. Conversion analysis provided an increase of 56% (35/63) in the diagnostic yield of genetic testing compared with genomic DNA sequencing alone.
The data confirm the heterogeneity of mismatch repair mutations and reveal that many mutations in colorectal cancer cases would be missed using conventional genomic DNA sequencing alone. Conversion analysis substantially increases the diagnostic yield of genetic testing for mismatch repair mutations in patients diagnosed as having colorectal cancer.
Approximately 60% of families that meet the Amsterdam-I criteria (AC-I) for hereditary nonpolyposis colorectal cancer (HNPCC) have a hereditary abnormality in a DNA mismatch repair (MMR) gene. Cancer incidence in AC-I families with MMR gene mutations is reported to be very high, but cancer incidence for individuals in AC-I families with no evidence of an MMR defect is unknown.
To determine if cancer risks in AC-I families with no apparent deficiency in DNA MMR are different from cancer risks in AC-I families with DNA MMR abnormalities.
Design, Setting, and Participants
Identification (1997–2001) of 161 AC-I pedigrees from multiple population- and clinic-based sources in North America and Germany, with families grouped into those with (group A) or without (group B) MMR deficiency by tumor testing. A total of 3422 relatives were included in the analyses.
Main Outcome Measures
Cancer incidence in groups A and B (excluding the 3 affected members used to define each pedigree as AC-I) and computed age- and sex-adjusted standardized incidence ratios (SIRs) using Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results data.
Group A families from both population- and clinic-based series showed increased incidence of the HNPCC-related cancers. Group B families showed increased incidence only for colorectal cancer (SIR, 2.3; 95% confidence interval, 1.7–3.0) and to a lesser extent than group A (SIR, 6.1; 95% confidence interval, 5.2–7.2) (P<.001).
Families who fulfill AC-I criteria but who have no evidence of a DNA MMR defect do not share the same cancer incidence as families with HNPCC-Lynch syndrome (ie, hereditary MMR deficiency). Relatives in such families have a lower incidence of colorectal cancer than those in families with HNPCC-Lynch syndrome, and incidence may not be increased for other cancers. These families should not be described or counseled as having HNPCC-Lynch syndrome. To facilitate distinguishing these entities, the designation of “familial colorectal cancer type X” is suggested to describe this type of familial aggregation of colorectal cancer.
We have previously mapped a major susceptibility locus influencing familial lung cancer risk to chromosome 6q23–25. However, the causal gene at this locus remains undetermined. In this study, we further refined this locus to identify a single candidate gene, by fine mapping using microsatellite markers and association studies using high-density SNPs. This region-wide scan across 6q23-25 found significant association between lung cancer susceptibility and three SNPs in the first intron of the RGS17. Association of two SNPs, rs4083914 and rs9479510, was further confirmed in two independent familial lung cancer populations. Quantitative RT-PCR analysis of matched tumor and normal human tissues found that RGS17 transcript accumulation is highly increased in sporadic lung tumors. Human lung tumor cell proliferation is inhibited upon knockdown of RGS17 transcript and enhanced upon overexpression of RGS17. Our findings indicate that RGS17 may influence familial susceptibility to lung cancer through its affects on cell proliferation.
linkage; haplotype; association; polymorphism; proliferation; tumor
Family history is a strong predictor of colorectal cancer risk; however, a diagnosis of colorectal cancer among first-degree relatives has not been systematically investigated as a function of the colorectal cancer molecular subtypes related to tumor microsatellite instability (MSI) status. We investigated whether the observable familial colorectal cancer risks differed according to tumor MSI subtypes, stratified as MSI-High (>30% instability), MSI-Low (<30% instability), and MSS (no instability). Data from 3,143 population-based colorectal cancer cases from five institutions were assessed for family history according to the Amsterdam criteria and the Bethesda guidelines, age at diagnosis, sex, tumor location, and MSI status. The distribution of patient characteristics by MSI status was compared using polytomous logistic regression. Overall, 2.8% colorectal cancer cases met the Amsterdam criteria and 37% met the Bethesda guidelines. There were 14% MSI-High, 13% MSI-Low, and 73% MSS colorectal cancers. MSI-High (P < 0.0001) and MSI-Low tumors (P = 0.01) were more proximally located than MSS tumors. MSI-High tumors were more common among females (P < 0.001). The highest proportion of MSI-High tumors occurred in cases <40 years of age whereas the age-dependent distribution of MSI-Low tumors was unchanged. MSI-High tumors showed a statistically significant association with increasing numbers of first-degree relatives with colorectal cancer (P = 0.002); this association disappeared, however, when MSI-High cases meeting Amsterdam criteria were removed from the analysis. MSI-Low tumors did not show a similar association with family history of colorectal cancer. Familial risk associated with MSI-High tumors is primarily driven by the Amsterdam-criteria patients. MSI-Low tumors may represent a distinct subtype of colorectal cancer with respect to certain epidemiologic variables studied here.
An ambitious plan to collect, curate, and make accessible information on genetic variations affecting human health is beginning to be realized.
The Breast Cancer Family Registry is a resource for interdisciplinary and translational studies of the genetic epidemiology of breast cancer. This resource is available to researchers worldwide for collaborative studies. Herein, we report the results of testing for germline mutations in BRCA1 and BRCA2. We have tested 4,531 probands for mutations in BRCA1 and 4,084 in BRCA2. Deleterious mutations in BRCA1 and BRCA2 were identified for 9.8% of probands tested [233/4,531 (5.1%) for BRCA1 and 193/4,084 (4.7%) for BRCA2]. Of 1,385 Ashkenazi Jewish women tested for only the three founder mutations, 17.4% carried a deleterious mutation. In total, from the proband and subsequent family testing, 1,360 female mutation carriers (788 in BRCA1, 566 in BRCA2, 6 in both BRCA1 and BRCA2) have been identified. The value of the resource has been greatly enhanced by determining the germline BRCA1 and BRCA2 mutation statuses of nearly 6,000 probands.
Biospecimen repository; Breast cancer; BRCA1; BRCA2