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  • 11
    Keywords: RISK ; ALLELES ; GENETIC SUSCEPTIBILITY ; LOCI ; GENOME-WIDE ASSOCIATION ; CONFER SUSCEPTIBILITY ; COMMON VARIANTS ; EPISTASIS ; IDENTIFIES 2 ; ERAP1
    Abstract: Part of the substantial unexplained familial aggregation of breast cancer may be due to interactions between common variants, but few studies have had adequate statistical power to detect interactions of realistic magnitude. We aimed to assess all two-way interactions in breast cancer susceptibility between 70 917 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) selected primarily based on prior evidence of a marginal effect. Thirty-eight international studies contributed data for 46 450 breast cancer cases and 42 461 controls of European origin as part of a multi-consortium project (COGS). First, SNPs were preselected based on evidence (P 〈 0.01) of a per-allele main effect, and all two-way combinations of those were evaluated by a per-allele (1 d.f.) test for interaction using logistic regression. Second, all 2.5 billion possible two-SNP combinations were evaluated using Boolean operation-based screening and testing, and SNP pairs with the strongest evidence of interaction (P 〈 10(-4)) were selected for more careful assessment by logistic regression. Under the first approach, 3277 SNPs were preselected, but an evaluation of all possible two-SNP combinations (1 d.f.) identified no interactions at P 〈 10(-8). Results from the second analytic approach were consistent with those from the first (P 〉 10(-10)). In summary, we observed little evidence of two-way SNP interactions in breast cancer susceptibility, despite the large number of SNPs with potential marginal effects considered and the very large sample size. This finding may have important implications for risk prediction, simplifying the modelling required. Further comprehensive, large-scale genome-wide interaction studies may identify novel interacting loci if the inherent logistic and computational challenges can be overcome.
    Type of Publication: Journal article published
    PubMed ID: 24242184
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  • 12
    Keywords: EXPRESSION ; transcription ; CHROMATIN ; WOMEN ; REVEALS ; susceptibility loci ; GENOME-WIDE ASSOCIATION ; AFRICAN-AMERICAN ; ESTROGEN-RECEPTOR BINDING ; DETERMINANT
    Abstract: The 10q26 locus in the second intron of FGFR2 is the locus most strongly associated with estrogen-receptor-positive breast cancer in genome-wide association studies. We conducted fine-scale mapping in case-control studies genotyped with a custom chip (iCOGS), comprising 41 studies (n = 89,050) of European ancestry, 9 Asian ancestry studies (n = 13,983), and 2 African ancestry studies (n = 2,028) from the Breast Cancer Association Consortium. We identified three statistically independent risk signals within the locus. Within risk signals 1 and 3, genetic analysis identified five and two variants, respectively, highly correlated with the most strongly associated SNPs. By using a combination of genetic fine mapping, data on DNase hypersensitivity, and electrophoretic mobility shift assays to study protein-DNA binding, we identified rs35054928, rs2981578, and rs45631563 as putative functional SNPs. Chromatin immunoprecipitation showed that FOXA1 preferentially bound to the risk-associated allele (C) of rs2981578 and was able to recruit ER alpha to this site in an allele-specific manner, whereas E2F1 preferentially bound the risk variant of rs35054928. The risk alleles were preferentially found in open chromatin and bound by Ser5 phosphorylated RNA polymerase II, suggesting that the risk alleles are associated with changes in transcription. Chromatin conformation capture demonstrated that the risk region was able to interact with the promoter of FGFR2, the likely target gene of this risk region. A role for FOXA1 in mediating breast cancer susceptibility at this locus is consistent with the finding that the FGFR2 risk locus primarily predisposes to estrogen-receptor-positive disease.
    Type of Publication: Journal article published
    PubMed ID: 24290378
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  • 13
    Abstract: Women using menopausal hormone therapy (MHT) are at increased risk of developing breast cancer (BC). To detect genetic modifiers of the association between current use of MHT and BC risk, we conducted a meta-analysis of four genome-wide case-only studies followed by replication in 11 case-control studies. We used a case-only design to assess interactions between single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) and current MHT use on risk of overall and lobular BC. The discovery stage included 2920 cases (541 lobular) from four genome-wide association studies. The top 1391 SNPs showing P values for interaction (Pint) 〈3.0x10(-3) were selected for replication using pooled case-control data from 11 studies of the Breast Cancer Association Consortium, including 7689 cases (676 lobular) and 9266 controls. Fixed-effects meta-analysis was used to derive combined Pint. No SNP reached genome-wide significance in either the discovery or combined stage. We observed effect modification of current MHT use on overall BC risk by two SNPs on chr13 near POMP (combined Pint〈/=8.9x10(-6)), two SNPs in SLC25A21 (combined Pint〈/=4.8x10(-5)), and three SNPs in PLCG2 (combined Pint〈/=4.5x10(-5)). The association between lobular BC risk was potentially modified by one SNP in TMEFF2 (combined Pint〈/=2.7x10(-5)), one SNP in CD80 (combined Pint〈/=8.2x10(-6)), three SNPs on chr17 near TMEM132E (combined Pint〈/=2.2x10(-6)), and two SNPs on chr18 near SLC25A52 (combined Pint〈/=4.6x10(-5)). In conclusion, polymorphisms in genes related to solute transportation in mitochondria, transmembrane signaling, and immune cell activation are potentially modifying BC risk associated with current use of MHT. These findings warrant replication in independent studies.
    Type of Publication: Journal article published
    PubMed ID: 24080446
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  • 14
    Keywords: EXPRESSION ; tumor ; POPULATION ; chromosome ; LYMPHOCYTES ; OUTCOMES ; LOCUS ; GENOME-WIDE ASSOCIATION ; CONFER SUSCEPTIBILITY ; COMMON VARIANTS
    Abstract: Large population-based registry studies have shown that breast cancer prognosis is inherited. Here we analyse single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) of genes implicated in human immunology and inflammation as candidates for prognostic markers of breast cancer survival involving 1,804 oestrogen receptor (ER)-negative patients treated with chemotherapy (279 events) from 14 European studies in a prior large-scale genotyping experiment, which is part of the Collaborative Oncological Gene-environment Study (COGS) initiative. We carry out replication using Asian COGS samples (n=522, 53 events) and the Prospective Study of Outcomes in Sporadic versus Hereditary breast cancer (POSH) study (n=315, 108 events). Rs4458204_A near CCL20 (2p36.3) is found to be associated with breast cancer-specific death at a genome-wide significant level (n=2,641, 440 events, combined allelic hazard ratio (HR)=1.81 (1.49-2.19); P for trend=1.90 x 10(-9)). Such survival-associated variants can represent ideal targets for tailored therapeutics, and may also enhance our current prognostic prediction capabilities.
    Type of Publication: Journal article published
    PubMed ID: 24937182
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  • 15
    Keywords: carcinoma ; POPULATION ; GENE-EXPRESSION ; MARKER ; OVARIAN-CANCER ; PROSTATE-CANCER ; METAANALYSIS ; susceptibility loci ; GENOME-WIDE ASSOCIATION ; PLATFORM
    Abstract: Common variants in the hepatocyte nuclear factor 1 homeobox B (HNF1B) gene are associated with the risk of Type II diabetes and multiple cancers. Evidence to date indicates that cancer risk may be mediated via genetic or epigenetic effects on HNF1B gene expression. We previously found single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) at the HNF1B locus to be associated with endometrial cancer, and now report extensive fine-mapping and in silico and laboratory analyses of this locus. Analysis of 1184 genotyped and imputed SNPs in 6608 Caucasian cases and 37 925 controls, and 895 Asian cases and 1968 controls, revealed the best signal of association for SNP rs11263763 (P = 8.4 x 10(-14), odds ratio = 0.86, 95% confidence interval = 0.82-0.89), located within HNF1B intron 1. Haplotype analysis and conditional analyses provide no evidence of further independent endometrial cancer risk variants at this locus. SNP rs11263763 genotype was associated with HNF1B mRNA expression but not with HNF1B methylation in endometrial tumor samples from The Cancer Genome Atlas. Genetic analyses prioritized rs11263763 and four other SNPs in high-to-moderate linkage disequilibrium as the most likely causal SNPs. Three of these SNPs map to the extended HNF1B promoter based on chromatin marks extending from the minimal promoter region. Reporter assays demonstrated that this extended region reduces activity in combination with the minimal HNF1B promoter, and that the minor alleles of rs11263763 or rs8064454 are associated with decreased HNF1B promoter activity. Our findings provide evidence for a single signal associated with endometrial cancer risk at the HNF1B locus, and that risk is likely mediated via altered HNF1B gene expression.
    Type of Publication: Journal article published
    PubMed ID: 25378557
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  • 16
    Keywords: EXPRESSION ; REDUCED RISK ; HUMAN GENES ; SINGLE-NUCLEOTIDE POLYMORPHISMS ; BINDING-SITES ; COMMON VARIANT ; CASP8 GENE ; susceptibility loci ; GENOME-WIDE ASSOCIATION ; IDENTIFIES 3
    Abstract: Genetic variations, such as single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in microRNAs (miRNA) or in the miRNA binding sites may affect the miRNA dependent gene expression regulation, which has been implicated in various cancers, including breast cancer, and may alter individual susceptibility to cancer. We investigated associations between miRNA related SNPs and breast cancer risk. First we evaluated 2,196 SNPs in a case-control study combining nine genome wide association studies (GWAS). Second, we further investigated 42 SNPs with suggestive evidence for association using 41,785 cases and 41,880 controls from 41 studies included in the Breast Cancer Association Consortium (BCAC). Combining the GWAS and BCAC data within a meta-analysis, we estimated main effects on breast cancer risk as well as risks for estrogen receptor (ER) and age defined subgroups. Five miRNA binding site SNPs associated significantly with breast cancer risk: rs1045494 (odds ratio (OR) 0.92; 95% confidence interval (CI): 0.88-0.96), rs1052532 (OR 0.97; 95% CI: 0.95-0.99), rs10719 (OR 0.97; 95% CI: 0.94-0.99), rs4687554 (OR 0.97; 95% CI: 0.95-0.99, and rs3134615 (OR 1.03; 95% CI: 1.01-1.05) located in the 3' UTR of CASP8, HDDC3, DROSHA, MUSTN1, and MYCL1, respectively. DROSHA belongs to miRNA machinery genes and has a central role in initial miRNA processing. The remaining genes are involved in different molecular functions, including apoptosis and gene expression regulation. Further studies are warranted to elucidate whether the miRNA binding site SNPs are the causative variants for the observed risk effects.
    Type of Publication: Journal article published
    PubMed ID: 25390939
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  • 17
    Keywords: EXPRESSION ; GENE ; BREAST-CANCER ; OVARIAN-CANCER ; PROSTATE-CANCER ; telomere length ; COMMON VARIANT ; susceptibility loci ; GENOME-WIDE ASSOCIATION ; FUNCTIONAL VARIATION
    Abstract: Several studies have reported associations between multiple cancer types and single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) on chromosome 5p15, which harbours TERT and CLPTM1L, but no such association has been reported with endometrial cancer. To evaluate the role of genetic variants at the TERT-CLPTM1L region in endometrial cancer risk, we carried out comprehensive fine-mapping analyses of genotyped and imputed SNPs using a custom Illumina iSelect array which includes dense SNP coverage of this region. We examined 396 SNPs (113 genotyped, 283 imputed) in 4,401 endometrial cancer cases and 28,758 controls. Single-SNP and forward/backward logistic regression models suggested evidence for three variants independently associated with endometrial cancer risk (P = 4.9 x 10(-6) to P = 7.7 x 10(-5)). Only one falls into a haplotype previously associated with other cancer types (rs7705526, in TERT intron 1), and this SNP has been shown to alter TERT promoter activity. One of the novel associations (rs13174814) maps to a second region in the TERT promoter and the other (rs62329728) is in the promoter region of CLPTM1L; neither are correlated with previously reported cancer-associated SNPs. Using TCGA RNASeq data, we found significantly increased expression of both TERT and CLPTM1L in endometrial cancer tissue compared with normal tissue (TERT P = 1.5 x 10(-18), CLPTM1L P = 1.5 x 10(-19)). Our study thus reports a novel endometrial cancer risk locus and expands the spectrum of cancer types associated with genetic variation at 5p15, further highlighting the importance of this region for cancer susceptibility.
    Type of Publication: Journal article published
    PubMed ID: 25487306
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  • 18
    Keywords: COHORT ; VARIANTS ; WOMEN ; HEIGHT ; METAANALYSIS ; bias ; ESTROGEN ; GENOME-WIDE ASSOCIATION ; PROGESTERONE-RECEPTOR STATUS ; INOSITOL POLYPHOSPHATES
    Abstract: A large genotyping project within the Breast Cancer Association Consortium (BCAC) recently identified 41 associations between single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) and overall breast cancer (BC) risk. We investigated whether the effects of these 41 SNPs, as well as six SNPs associated with estrogen receptor (ER) negative BC risk are modified by 13 environmental risk factors for BC. Data from 22 studies participating in BCAC were pooled, comprising up to 26,633 cases and 30,119 controls. Interactions between SNPs and environmental factors were evaluated using an empirical Bayes-type shrinkage estimator. Six SNPs showed interactions with associated p-values (p(int)) 〈1.1 x 10(-3). None of the observed interactions was significant after accounting for multiple testing. The Bayesian False Discovery Probability was used to rank the findings, which indicated three interactions as being noteworthy at 1% prior probability of interaction. SNP rs6828523 was associated with increased ER-negative BC risk in women 170 cm (OR = 1.22, p = 0.017), but inversely associated with ER-negative BC risk in women 〈160 cm (OR = 0.83, p = 0.039, p(int) = 1.9 x 10(-4)). The inverse association between rs4808801 and overall BC risk was stronger for women who had had four or more pregnancies (OR = 0.85, p = 2.0 x 10(-4)), and absent in women who had had just one (OR = 0.96, p = 0.19, p(int) = 6.1 x 10(-4)). SNP rs11242675 was inversely associated with overall BC risk in never/former smokers (OR = 0.93, p = 2.8 x 10(-5)), but no association was observed in current smokers (OR = 1.07, p = 0.14, p(int) = 3.4 x 10(-4)). In conclusion, recently identified BC susceptibility loci are not strongly modified by established risk factors and the observed potential interactions require confirmation in independent studies. What's new? The recent discovery of 47 susceptibility loci associated with all or estrogen receptor-negative breast cancer provided new opportunities for genetic risk prediction but it remained unclear how exposure levels of environmental (non-genetic) risk factors influenced the risk assessment. In this gene-environment study, the international team examined interactions between the single nucleotide polymorphisms and 13 established environmental risk factors including parity, height and alcohol consumption. Notably, relative risks of breast cancer associated with the susceptibility loci were not strongly modified by environmental risk factors, a finding that, if confirmed, has important implications for the risk assessment in breast cancer.
    Type of Publication: Journal article published
    PubMed ID: 25227710
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  • 19
    Keywords: EXPRESSION ; BINDING ; GENOME-WIDE ASSOCIATION ; ESTROGEN-RECEPTOR-ALPHA ; CONFER SUSCEPTIBILITY ; RISK LOCUS ; COMMON VARIANTS ; FUNCTIONAL VARIANTS ; FOXA1 ; ANALYSES REVEAL
    Abstract: We recently identified a novel susceptibility variant, rs865686, for estrogen-receptor positive breast cancer at 9q31.2. Here, we report a fine-mapping analysis of the 9q31.2 susceptibility locus using 43 160 cases and 42 600 controls of European ancestry ascertained from 52 studies and a further 5795 cases and 6624 controls of Asian ancestry from nine studies. Single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) rs676256 was most strongly associated with risk in Europeans (odds ratios [OR] = 0.90 [0.88-0.92]; P-value = 1.58 x 10(-25)). This SNP is one of a cluster of highly correlated variants, including rs865686, that spans 14.5 kb. We identified two additional independent association signals demarcated by SNPs rs10816625 (OR = 1.12 [1.08-1.17]; P-value = 7.89 x 10(-09)) and rs13294895 (OR = 1.09 [1.06-1.12]; P-value = 2.97 x 10(-11)). SNP rs10816625, but not rs13294895, was also associated with risk of breast cancer in Asian individuals (OR = 1.12 [1.06-1.18]; P-value = 2.77 x 10(-05)). Functional genomic annotation using data derived from breast cancer cell-line models indicates that these SNPs localise to putative enhancer elements that bind known drivers of hormone-dependent breast cancer, including ER-alpha, FOXA1 and GATA-3. In vitro analyses indicate that rs10816625 and rs13294895 have allele-specific effects on enhancer activity and suggest chromatin interactions with the KLF4 gene locus. These results demonstrate the power of dense genotyping in large studies to identify independent susceptibility variants. Analysis of associations using subjects with different ancestry, combined with bioinformatic and genomic characterisation, can provide strong evidence for the likely causative alleles and their functional basis.
    Type of Publication: Journal article published
    PubMed ID: 25652398
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  • 20
    Keywords: TUMORS ; STABILITY ; ARCHITECTURE ; mammographic density ; GENOME-WIDE ASSOCIATION ; AUTOPHAGY ; COMMON VARIANTS ; BRCA2 MUTATION CARRIERS ; GENOTYPE IMPUTATION ; ZNF365
    Abstract: Genome-wide association studies have identified SNPs near ZNF365 at 10q21.2 that are associated with both breast cancer risk and mammographic density. To identify the most likely causal SNPs, we fine mapped the association signal by genotyping 428 SNPs across the region in 89,050 European and 12,893 Asian case and control subjects from the Breast Cancer Association Consortium. We identified four independent sets of correlated, highly trait-associated variants (iCHAVs), three of which were located within ZNF365. The most strongly risk-associated SNP, rs10995201 in iCHAV1, showed clear evidence of association with both estrogen receptor (ER)-positive (OR = 0.85 10.82-0.881) and ER-negative (OR = 0.87 [0.82-0.911) disease, and was also the SNP most strongly associated with percent mammographic density. iCHAV2 (lead SNP, chr10: 64,258,684:0) and iCHAV3 (lead SNP, rs7922449) were also associated with ER-positive (OR = 0.93 10.91-0.951 and OR = 1.06 [1.03-1.091) and ER-negative (OR = 0.95 [0.91-0.98] and OR = 1.08 [1.04-1.131) disease. There was weaker evidence for iCHAV4, located 5' of ADO, associated only with ER-positive breast cancer (OR = 0.93 [0.90-0.961). We found 12, 17, 18, and 2 candidate causal SNPs for breast cancer in iCHAVs 1-4, respectively. Chromosome conformation capture analysis showed that iCHAV2 interacts with the ZNF365 and NRBF2 (more than 600 kb away) promoters in normal and cancerous breast epithelial cells. Luciferase assays did not identify SNPs that affect transactivation of ZNF365, but identified a protective haplotype in iCHAV2, associated with silencing of the NRBF2 promoter, implicating this gene in the etiology of breast cancer.
    Type of Publication: Journal article published
    PubMed ID: 26073781
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