[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Majority of the known breast cancer susceptibility genes have a role in DNA repair and the most important high-risk genes BRCA1 and BRCA2 are specifically involved in the homologous recombination repair (HRR) of DNA double-strand breaks. A central player in HRR is RAD51 that binds DNA at the damage site. The RAD51 paralogs RAD51B, RAD51C, RAD51D, XRCC2, and XRCC3 facilitate the binding of RAD51 to DNA. While germline mutations in RAD51C and RAD51D are associated with high ovarian cancer risk and RAD51B polymorphisms with breast cancer, the contribution of RAD51, XRCC3, and XRCC2 is more unclear. To investigate the role of RAD51, XRCC3, and XRCC2 in breast cancer predisposition and to identify putative recurrent founder mutations in the Finnish population where such mutations have been observed in most of the currently known susceptibility genes, we screened 182 familial Finnish breast or ovarian cancer patients for germline variation in the RAD51and XRCC3 genes and 342 patients for variation in XRCC2, with a subset of the patients selected on the basis of decreased RAD51 protein expression on tumors. We also performed haplotype analyses for 1516 breast cancer cases and 1234 controls to assess the common variation in these genes. No pathogenic mutations were detected in any of the genes and the distribution of haplotypes was similar between cases and controls. Our results suggest that RAD51, XRCC3, and XRCC2 do not substantially contribute to breast cancer predisposition in the Finnish population.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Menopause timing has a substantial impact on infertility and risk of disease, including breast cancer, but the underlying mechanisms are poorly understood. We report a dual strategy in ∼70,000 women to identify common and low-frequency protein-coding variation associated with age at natural menopause (ANM). We identified 44 regions with common variants, including two regions harboring additional rare missense alleles of large effect. We found enrichment of signals in or near genes involved in delayed puberty, highlighting the first molecular links between the onset and end of reproductive lifespan. Pathway analyses identified major association with DNA damage response (DDR) genes, including the first common coding variant in BRCA1 associated with any complex trait. Mendelian randomization analyses supported a causal effect of later ANM on breast cancer risk (∼6% increase in risk per year; P = 3 × 10(-14)), likely mediated by prolonged sex hormone exposure rather than DDR mechanisms.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Several high and moderate risk alleles have been identified for breast and ovarian cancer predisposition and most of them encode proteins that function in DNA repair. A prospective candidate for breast and ovarian cancer susceptibility is the HELQ helicase that has a role in the resolution of DNA interstrand cross-links. HELQ interacts with the RAD51 paralog complex BCDX2. Two components of the complex, RAD51C and RAD51D, increase the risk of ovarian cancer especially, and the other two, RAD51B and XRCC2 have been associated with breast cancer risk. To investigate the role of HELQ in cancer predisposition, we screened the gene for germline variation in 185 Finnish breast or ovarian cancer families and performed haplotype analyses for 1517 breast cancer cases, 308 ovarian cancer cases, and 1234 population controls using five common polymorphisms at the HELQ gene locus. No truncating mutations were identified among the families. One putatively pathogenic missense mutation c.1309A>G was identified but no additional carriers were observed in the subsequent genotyping of 332 familial breast or ovarian cancer patients. Furthermore, the haplotype distribution did not differ between breast or ovarian cancer cases and population controls. Our results indicate that HELQ is not a major breast and ovarian cancer susceptibility gene in the Finnish population. However, we cannot rule out rare risk-variants in the Finnish or other populations and larger datasets are needed to further assess the role of HELQ especially in ovarian cancer predisposition.
Familial Cancer 09/2015; DOI:10.1007/s10689-015-9838-4 · 1.98 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: In breast cancer, constitutive activation of NF-κB has been reported, however, the impact of genetic variation of the pathway on patient prognosis has been little studied. Furthermore, a combination of genetic variants, rather than single polymorphisms, may affect disease prognosis. Here, in an extensive dataset (n = 30,431) from the Breast Cancer Association Consortium, we investigated the association of 917 SNPs in 75 genes in the NF-κB pathway with breast cancer prognosis. We explored SNP-SNP interactions on survival using the likelihood-ratio test comparing multivariate Cox' regression models of SNP pairs without and with an interaction term. We found two interacting pairs associating with prognosis: patients simultaneously homozygous for the rare alleles of rs5996080 and rs7973914 had worse survival (HRinteraction 6.98, 95% CI=3.3-14.4, P=1.42E-07), and patients carrying at least one rare allele for rs17243893 and rs57890595 had better survival (HRinteraction 0.51, 95% CI=0.3-0.6, P = 2.19E-05). Based on in silico functional analyses and literature, we speculate that the rs5996080 and rs7973914 loci may affect the BAFFR and TNFR1/TNFR3 receptors and breast cancer survival, possibly by disturbing both the canonical and non-canonical NF-κB pathways or their dynamics, whereas, rs17243893-rs57890595 interaction on survival may be mediated through TRAF2-TRAIL-R4 interplay. These results warrant further validation and functional analyses.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Background:
Epidemiological studies have linked adult height with breast cancer risk in women. However, the magnitude of the association, particularly by subtypes of breast cancer, has not been established. Furthermore, the mechanisms of the association remain unclear.
We performed a meta-analysis to investigate associations between height and breast cancer risk using data from 159 prospective cohorts totaling 5216302 women, including 113178 events. In a consortium with individual-level data from 46325 case patients and 42482 control patients, we conducted a Mendelian randomization analysis using a genetic score that comprised 168 height-associated variants as an instrument. This association was further evaluated in a second consortium using summary statistics data from 16003 case patients and 41335 control patients.
The pooled relative risk of breast cancer was 1.17 (95% confidence interval [CI] = 1.15 to 1.19) per 10cm increase in height in the meta-analysis of prospective studies. In Mendelian randomization analysis, the odds ratio of breast cancer per 10cm increase in genetically predicted height was 1.22 (95% CI = 1.13 to 1.32) in the first consortium and 1.21 (95% CI = 1.05 to 1.39) in the second consortium. The association was found in both premenopausal and postmenopausal women but restricted to hormone receptor-positive breast cancer. Analyses of height-associated variants identified eight new loci associated with breast cancer risk after adjusting for multiple comparisons, including three loci at 1q21.2, DNAJC27, and CCDC91 at genome-wide significance level P < 5×10(-8).
Our study provides strong evidence that adult height is a risk factor for breast cancer in women and certain genetic factors and biological pathways affecting adult height have an important role in the etiology of breast cancer.
Journal of the National Cancer Institute 08/2015; 107(11). DOI:10.1093/jnci/djv219 · 12.58 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Annexin A1 (ANXA1) is a protein related with the carcinogenesis process and metastasis formation in many tumors. However, little is known about the prognostic value of ANXA1 in breast cancer. The purpose of this study is to evaluate the association between ANXA1 expression, BRCA1/2 germline carriership, specific tumor subtypes and survival in breast cancer patients.
Clinical-pathological information and follow-up data were collected from nine breast cancer studies from the Breast Cancer Association Consortium (BCAC) (n = 5,752) and from one study of familial breast cancer patients with BRCA1/2 mutations (n = 107). ANXA1 expression was scored based on the percentage of immunohistochemical staining in tumor cells. Survival analyses were performed using a multivariable Cox model.
The frequency of ANXA1 positive tumors was higher in familial breast cancer patients with BRCA1/2 mutations than in BCAC patients, with 48.6 % versus 12.4 %, respectively; P <0.0001. ANXA1 was also highly expressed in BCAC tumors that were poorly differentiated, triple negative, EGFR-CK5/6 positive or had developed in patients at a young age. In the first 5 years of follow-up, patients with ANXA1 positive tumors had a worse breast cancer-specific survival (BCSS) than ANXA1 negative (HRadj = 1.35; 95 % CI = 1.05-1.73), but the association weakened after 10 years (HRadj = 1.13; 95 % CI = 0.91-1.40). ANXA1 was a significant independent predictor of survival in HER2+ patients (10-years BCSS: HRadj = 1.70; 95 % CI = 1.17-2.45).
ANXA1 is overexpressed in familial breast cancer patients with BRCA1/2 mutations and correlated with poor prognosis features: triple negative and poorly differentiated tumors. ANXA1 might be a biomarker candidate for breast cancer survival prediction in high risk groups such as HER2+ cases.
BMC Medicine 07/2015; 13(1):156. DOI:10.1186/s12916-015-0392-6 · 7.25 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: HER2 is a well-established prognostic and predictive factor in invasive breast cancer. The role of HER2 in ductal breast carcinoma in situ (DCIS) is debated and recent data have suggested that HER2 is mainly related to in situ recurrences. Our aim was to study HER2 as a prognostic factor in a large population based cohort of DCIS with long-term follow-up.
All 458 patients diagnosed with a primary DCIS 1986-2004 in two Swedish counties were included. Silver-enhanced in situ hybridisation (SISH) was used for detection of HER2 gene amplification and protein expression was assessed by immunohistochemistry (IHC) in tissue microarrays. HER2 positivity was defined as amplified HER2 gene and/or HER2 3+ by IHC. HER2 status in relation to new ipsilateral events (IBE) and Invasive Breast Cancer Recurrences, local or distant (IBCR) was assessed by Kaplan-Meier survival analyses and Cox proportional hazards regression models.
Primary DCIS was screening-detected in 75.5 % of cases. Breast conserving surgery (BCS) was performed in 78.6 % of whom 44.0 % received postoperative radiotherapy. No patients received adjuvant endocrine- or chemotherapy. The majority of DCIS could be HER2 classified (N = 420 (91.7 %)); 132 HER2 positive (31 %) and 288 HER2 negative (69 %)). HER2 positivity was related to large tumor size (P = 0.002), high grade (P < 0.001) and ER- and PR negativity (P < 0.001 for both). During follow-up (mean 184 months), 106 IBCRs and 105 IBEs were identified among all 458 cases corresponding to 54 in situ and 51 invasive recurrences. Eighteen women died from breast cancer and another 114 had died from other causes. The risk of IBCR was statistically significantly lower subsequent to a HER2 positive DCIS compared to a HER2 negative DCIS, (Log-Rank P = 0.03, (HR) 0.60 (95 % CI 0.38-0.94)). Remarkably, the curves did not separate until after 10 years. In ER-stratified analyses, HER2 positive DCIS was associated with lower risk of IBCR among women with ER negative DCIS (Log-Rank P = 0.003), but not for women with ER positive DCIS.
Improved prognostic tools for DCIS patients are warranted to tailor adjuvant therapy. Here, we demonstrate that HER2 positive disease in the primary DCIS is associated with lower risk of recurrent invasive breast cancer.
BMC Cancer 06/2015; 15(1):468. DOI:10.1186/s12885-015-1479-3 · 3.36 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Objective:
Clinical genetic testing is commercially available for rs61764370, an inherited variant residing in a KRAS 3' UTR microRNA binding site, based on suggested associations with increased ovarian and breast cancer risk as well as with survival time. However, prior studies, emphasizing particular subgroups, were relatively small. Therefore, we comprehensively evaluated ovarian and breast cancer risks as well as clinical outcome associated with rs61764370.
Centralized genotyping and analysis were performed for 140,012 women enrolled in the Ovarian Cancer Association Consortium (15,357 ovarian cancer patients; 30,816 controls), the Breast Cancer Association Consortium (33,530 breast cancer patients; 37,640 controls), and the Consortium of Modifiers of BRCA1 and BRCA2 (14,765 BRCA1 and 7904 BRCA2 mutation carriers).
We found no association with risk of ovarian cancer (OR=0.99, 95% CI 0.94-1.04, p=0.74) or breast cancer (OR=0.98, 95% CI 0.94-1.01, p=0.19) and results were consistent among mutation carriers (BRCA1, ovarian cancer HR=1.09, 95% CI 0.97-1.23, p=0.14, breast cancer HR=1.04, 95% CI 0.97-1.12, p=0.27; BRCA2, ovarian cancer HR=0.89, 95% CI 0.71-1.13, p=0.34, breast cancer HR=1.06, 95% CI 0.94-1.19, p=0.35). Null results were also obtained for associations with overall survival following ovarian cancer (HR=0.94, 95% CI 0.83-1.07, p=0.38), breast cancer (HR=0.96, 95% CI 0.87-1.06, p=0.38), and all other previously-reported associations.
rs61764370 is not associated with risk of ovarian or breast cancer nor with clinical outcome for patients with these cancers. Therefore, genotyping this variant has no clinical utility related to the prediction or management of these cancers.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Introduction:
Previous studies have identified common germline variants nominally associated with breast cancer survival. These associations have not been widely replicated in further studies. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the association of previously reported SNPs with breast cancer-specific survival using data from a pooled analysis of eight breast cancer survival genome-wide association studies (GWAS) from the Breast Cancer Association Consortium.
A literature review was conducted of all previously published associations between common germline variants and three survival outcomes: breast cancer-specific survival, overall survival and disease-free survival. All associations that reached the nominal significance level of P value <0.05 were included. Single nucleotide polymorphisms that had been previously reported as nominally associated with at least one survival outcome were evaluated in the pooled analysis of over 37,000 breast cancer cases for association with breast cancer-specific survival. Previous associations were evaluated using a one-sided test based on the reported direction of effect.
Fifty-six variants from 45 previous publications were evaluated in the meta-analysis. Fifty-four of these were evaluated in the full set of 37,954 breast cancer cases with 2,900 events and the two additional variants were evaluated in a reduced sample size of 30,000 samples in order to ensure independence from the previously published studies. Five variants reached nominal significance (P <0.05) in the pooled GWAS data compared to 2.8 expected under the null hypothesis. Seven additional variants were associated (P <0.05) with ER-positive disease.
Although no variants reached genome-wide significance (P <5 x 10(-8)), these results suggest that there is some evidence of association between candidate common germline variants and breast cancer prognosis. Larger studies from multinational collaborations are necessary to increase the power to detect associations, between common variants and prognosis, at more stringent significance levels.
Breast Cancer Research 04/2015; 17(1). DOI:10.1186/s13058-015-0570-7 · 5.49 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Background:
Data for multiple common susceptibility alleles for breast cancer may be combined to identify women at different levels of breast cancer risk. Such stratification could guide preventive and screening strategies. However, empirical evidence for genetic risk stratification is lacking.
We investigated the value of using 77 breast cancer-associated single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) for risk stratification, in a study of 33 673 breast cancer cases and 33 381 control women of European origin. We tested all possible pair-wise multiplicative interactions and constructed a 77-SNP polygenic risk score (PRS) for breast cancer overall and by estrogen receptor (ER) status. Absolute risks of breast cancer by PRS were derived from relative risk estimates and UK incidence and mortality rates.
There was no strong evidence for departure from a multiplicative model for any SNP pair. Women in the highest 1% of the PRS had a three-fold increased risk of developing breast cancer compared with women in the middle quintile (odds ratio [OR] = 3.36, 95% confidence interval [CI] = 2.95 to 3.83). The ORs for ER-positive and ER-negative disease were 3.73 (95% CI = 3.24 to 4.30) and 2.80 (95% CI = 2.26 to 3.46), respectively. Lifetime risk of breast cancer for women in the lowest and highest quintiles of the PRS were 5.2% and 16.6% for a woman without family history, and 8.6% and 24.4% for a woman with a first-degree family history of breast cancer.
The PRS stratifies breast cancer risk in women both with and without a family history of breast cancer. The observed level of risk discrimination could inform targeted screening and prevention strategies. Further discrimination may be achievable through combining the PRS with lifestyle/environmental factors, although these were not considered in this report.
JNCI Journal of the National Cancer Institute 04/2015; 107(5):5. DOI:10.1093/jnci/djv036 · 12.58 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: We have utilized a two-stage study design to search for SNPs associated with the survival of breast cancer patients treated with adjuvant chemotherapy. Our initial GWS data set consisted of 805 Finnish breast cancer cases (360 treated with adjuvant chemotherapy). The top 39 SNPs from this stage were analyzed in three independent data sets: iCOGS (n=6720 chemotherapy-treated cases), SUCCESS-A (n=3596), and POSH (n=518). Two SNPs were successfully validated: rs6500843 (any chemotherapy; per-allele HR 1.16, 95% C.I. 1.08-1.26, p=0.0001, p(adjusted)=0.0091), and rs11155012 (anthracycline therapy; per-allele HR 1.21, 95% C.I. 1.08-1.35, p=0.0010, p(adjusted)=0.0270). The SNP rs6500843 was found to specifically interact with adjuvant chemotherapy, independently of standard prognostic markers (p(interaction)=0.0009), with the rs6500843-GG genotype corresponding to the highest hazard among chemotherapy-treated cases (HR 1.47, 95% C.I. 1.20-1.80). Upon trans-eQTL analysis of public microarray data, the rs6500843 locus was found to associate with the expression of a group of genes involved in cell cycle control, notably AURKA, the expression of which also exhibited differential prognostic value between chemotherapy-treated and untreated cases in our analysis of microarray data. Based on previously published information, we propose that the eQTL genes may be connected to the rs6500843 locus via a RBFOX1-FOXM1 -mediated regulatory pathway.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Genome-wide association studies (GWAS) and large-scale replication studies have identified common variants in 79 loci associated with breast cancer, explaining ∼14% of the familial risk of the disease. To identify new susceptibility loci, we performed a meta-analysis of 11 GWAS, comprising 15,748 breast cancer cases and 18,084 controls together with 46,785 cases and 42,892 controls from 41 studies genotyped on a 211,155-marker custom array (iCOGS). Analyses were restricted to women of European ancestry. We generated genotypes for more than 11 million SNPs by imputation using the 1000 Genomes Project reference panel, and we identified 15 new loci associated with breast cancer at P < 5 × 10(-8). Combining association analysis with ChIP-seq chromatin binding data in mammary cell lines and ChIA-PET chromatin interaction data from ENCODE, we identified likely target genes in two regions: SETBP1 at 18q12.3 and RNF115 and PDZK1 at 1q21.1. One association appears to be driven by an amino acid substitution encoded in EXO1.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Introduction:
Tumor lymphocyte infiltration is associated with clinical response to chemotherapy in estrogen receptor (ER) negative breast cancer. To identify variants in immunosuppressive pathway genes associated with prognosis after adjuvant chemotherapy for ER-negative patients, we studied stage I-III invasive breast cancer patients of European ancestry, including 9,334 ER-positive (3,151 treated with chemotherapy) and 2,334 ER-negative patients (1,499 treated with chemotherapy).
We pooled data from sixteen studies from the Breast Cancer Association Consortium (BCAC), and employed two independent studies for replications. Overall 3,610 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in 133 genes were genotyped as part of the Collaborative Oncological Gene-environment Study, in which phenotype and clinical data were collected and harmonized. Multivariable Cox proportional hazard regression was used to assess genetic associations with overall survival (OS) and breast cancer-specific survival (BCSS). Heterogeneity according to chemotherapy or ER status was evaluated with the log-likelihood ratio test.
Three independent SNPs in TGFBR2 and IL12B were associated with OS (P <10⁻³) solely in ER-negative patients after chemotherapy (267 events). Poorer OS associated with TGFBR2 rs1367610 (G > C) (per allele hazard ratio (HR) 1.54 (95% confidence interval (CI) 1.22 to 1.95), P = 3.08 × 10⁻⁴) was not found in ER-negative patients without chemotherapy or ER-positive patients with chemotherapy (P for interaction <10-3). Two SNPs in IL12B (r² = 0.20) showed different associations with ER-negative disease after chemotherapy: rs2546892 (G > A) with poorer OS (HR 1.50 (95% CI 1.21 to 1.86), P = 1.81 × 10⁻⁴), and rs2853694 (A > C) with improved OS (HR 0.73 (95% CI 0.61 to 0.87), P = 3.67 × 10⁻⁴). Similar associations were observed with BCSS. Association with TGFBR2 rs1367610 but not IL12B variants replicated using BCAC Asian samples and the independent Prospective Study of Outcomes in Sporadic versus Hereditary Breast Cancer Study and yielded a combined HR of 1.57 ((95% CI 1.28 to 1.94), P = 2.05 × 10⁻⁵) without study heterogeneity.
TGFBR2 variants may have prognostic and predictive value in ER-negative breast cancer patients treated with adjuvant chemotherapy. Our findings provide further insights into the development of immunotherapeutic targets for ER-negative breast cancer.
Breast cancer research: BCR 02/2015; 17(1). DOI:10.1186/s13058-015-0522-2 · 5.49 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Background:
Although Osteopontin has been known as a marker for cancer progression, the elevated production of this cytokine is not specific for cancer. We have identified the splice variant Osteopontin-c as being absent from healthy tissue but associated with about 75% of breast cancer cases. However, in previous studies of Osteopontin-c, follow-up information was not available.
Here we have analysed 671 patients, comprising a cohort of 291 paraffin blocks plus a population-based case-control study of 380 arrayed breast tumor tissues.
We find that high staining intensity of nuclear Osteopontin-c is strongly associated with mortality in patients with early breast cancer. Cytosolic staining for exon 4, reflective of Osteopontin-a and -b also predicts poor outcome. By contrast, total Osteopontin does not correlate with prognosis. These diverse assessments of Osteopontin also do not correlate with each other, suggesting distinct expression patterns for the variant forms. Consistent with its role in tumor progression, not tumor initiation, Osteopontin-c is not correlated with proliferation markers (Ki-67, cyclin A, cyclin B, cyclin E and cyclin D), neither is it correlated with ER, PR or HER2.
The addition of Osteopontin-c immunohistochemistry to standard pathology work-ups may have prognostic benefit in early breast cancer diagnosis.
British Journal of Cancer 01/2015; 112(4). DOI:10.1038/bjc.2014.664 · 4.84 Impact Factor