A Germline Variant in the Interferon Regulatory Factor 4 Gene as a Novel Skin Cancer Risk Locus

Clinical Research Program, Department of Dermatology, Brigham and Women's Hospital, and Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts, USA.
Cancer Research (Impact Factor: 9.28). 02/2011; 71(5):1533-9. DOI: 10.1158/0008-5472.CAN-10-1818
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Genome-wide association studies on pigmentary phenotypes provide a pool of candidate genetic markers for skin cancer risk. The SNPs identified from a genome-wide association study of natural hair color were assessed for associations with the risk of three types of skin cancer simultaneously in a nested case-control study within the Nurses' Health Study [218 melanoma, 285 squamous cell carcinoma (SCC), and 300 basal cell carcinoma (BCC) cases, and 870 common controls]. Along with two known pigmentation loci, MC1R and OCA2, the IRF4 rs12203592 T allele was associated with an increased risk of each type of skin cancer (P value, 6.6 × 10(-4) for melanoma, 7.0 × 10(-7) for SCC, and 0.04 for BCC). This association was further replicated in additional samples (190 melanoma, 252 SCC, and 634 common controls). The P value in the replication set was 0.03 for melanoma and 4.2 × 10(-3) for SCC. The risk of BCC was replicated in an independent set of 213 cases and 718 controls (P value, 0.02). The combined results showed that the association with SCC reached the genome-wide significance level [odds ratio (OR) for additive model = 1.61, 95%CI, 1.36-1.91, P = 3.2 × 10(-8)]. The OR was 1.49 for melanoma (95%CI, 1.23-1.80; P = 4.5 × 10(-5)), and 1.32 for BCC (95%CI, 1.11-1.57; P = 1.6 × 10(-3)). Given that the T allele was shown previously to be associated with increased expression of IRF4 locus, further studies are warranted to elucidate the role of the IRF4 gene in human pigmentation and skin cancer development.

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    ABSTRACT: The risk of developing skin cancers is dependent on a combination of environmental factors and personal genetic predispositions. Basal cell carcinoma (BCC) has been associated with single nucleotide polymorphisms in several pigmentation genes; however, there is still controversy concerning the mechanism by which these variants may increase the risk of BCC. The pathway may lead to pigmentation alone, but evidence for their independent influence is growing. Using a single base extension protocol, candidate polymorphisms within 11 known pigment-related genes were studied for their association with BCC in a population sample consisting of 164 patients and 707 controls. The significance of variation within the MC1R gene was confirmed and, in addition, position rs12203592 within the IRF4 gene was shown to be associated with BCC. These associations remained significant after adjustment for skin color. Gene-gene interactions were found to influence susceptibility to BCC. Among interacting genes are the two above-mentioned loci with main effect on BCC risk and additionally KITLG, TYRP1, ASIP and TYR. The obtained results indicate that polymorphism at MC1R and IRF4 constitute pigmentation-independent risk factor in the development of BCC. Moreover, susceptibility to BCC may be influenced by epistatic effects between pigmentation genes.
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    ABSTRACT: Background Few high penetrance genes are known in Malignant Melanoma (MM), however, the involvement of low-penetrance genes such as MC1R, OCA2, ASIP, SLC45A2 and TYR has been observed. Lately, genome-wide association studies (GWAS) have been the ideal strategy to identify new common, low-penetrance susceptibility loci. In this case–control study, we try to validate in our population nine melanoma associated markers selected from published GWAS in melanoma predisposition. Methods We genotyped the 9 markers corresponding to 8 genes (PARP1, MX2, ATM, CCND1, NADSYN1, CASP8, IRF4 and CYP2R1) in 566 cases and 347 controls from a Spanish population using KASPar probes. Genotypes were analyzed by logistic regression and adjusted by phenotypic characteristics. Results We confirm the protective role in MM of the rs3219090 located on the PARP1 gene (p-value 0.027). Additionally, this SNP was also associated with eye color (p-value 0.002). A second polymorphism, rs12203592, located on the IRF4 gene was associated with protection to develop MM for the dominant model (p-value 0.037). We have also observed an association of this SNP with both lentigines (p-value 0.014) and light eye color (p-value 3.76 × 10-4). Furthermore, we detected a novel association with rs1485993, located on the CCND1 gene, and dark eye color (p-value 4.96 × 10-4). Finally, rs1801516, located on the ATM gene, showed a trend towards a protective role in MM similar to the one firstly described in a GWAS study. Conclusions To our knowledge, this is the first time that these SNPs have been associated with MM in a Spanish population. We confirmed the proposed role of rs3219090, located on the PARP1 gene, and rs12203592, located on the IRF4 gene, as protective to MM along the same lines as have previous genome-wide associated works. Finally, we have seen associations between IRF4, PARP1, and CCND1 and phenotypic characteristics, confirming previous results for the IRF4 gene and presenting novel data for the last two, suggesting that pigmentation characteristics correlated with eye color are potential mediators between PARP1 and MM protection.
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