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Oncology - Public Health and Epidemiology - Urology

Genetic Variants in Telomere-Maintenance Genes and Bladder Cancer Risk
Published: Friday, February 17, 2012
Author: Joshua Chang et al.

by Joshua Chang, Colin P. Dinney, Maosheng Huang, Xifeng Wu, Jian Gu

Telomeres are critical in maintaining genomic stability. Genetic variants in telomere pathway genes may affect telomere and telomerase function, and subsequently cancer risk. We evaluated 126 SNPs from 10 genes related to telomere regulation in relation to bladder cancer risk. Five SNPs, 4 from TEP1 gene and 1 from PINX1 gene, were found to be highly significant (P<0.01). Out of these, the most significant association was found in rs2228041 of TEP1 (OR 1.66, 95% CI 1.19–2.31) while rs1469557 of PINX1 had a protective effect (OR 0.75, 95% CI 0.61–0.93). Haplotype analysis showed that a TEP1 haplotype consisting of the variant alleles of 7 SNPs exhibited a 2.28 fold increased risk (95% CI 1.13–4.60). We then performed cumulative analysis of multiple risk variants, as well as Classification and Regression Tree (CART) to look for gene-gene interactions. In cumulative effect analysis, the group with 4–5 risk variants had an OR of 2.57 (95% CI?=?1.62–4.09) versus the reference group with 0 risk variants. The CART analysis categorized individuals into five subgroups with different bladder cancer risk profiles based on their distinct genotype background. To our knowledge, this is one of the largest, most comprehensive studies on bladder cancer risk concerning telomere-regulating pathway gene SNPs and our results support that genetic variations of telomere maintenance modulate bladder cancer risk individually and jointly.