ABSTRACT: Many carcinogens in tobacco smoke cause DNA damage, and some of that damage can be mitigated by the actions of DNA repair enzymes. In a case-control study nested within the Beta-Carotene and Retinol Efficacy Trial, a randomized chemoprevention trial in current and former heavy smokers, we examined whether lung cancer risk was associated with variation in 26 base excision repair, mismatch repair, and homologous recombination repair genes. Analyses were limited to Caucasians (744 cases, 1477 controls), and logistic regression was used to calculate odds ratios (ORs) and 95% confidence intervals (CIs) for individual SNPs and common haplotypes, with adjustment for matching factors. Lung cancer associations were observed (p<0.05) with SNPs in MSH5 (rs3131379, rs707938), MSH2 (rs2303428), UNG (rs246079), and PCNA (rs25406). MSH5 rs3131379 is a documented lung cancer susceptibility locus in complete linkage disequilibrium with rs3117582 in BAT3, and we observed associations similar in magnitude to those in prior studies (per A allele OR 1.37, 95% CI 1.13-1.65). UNG was associated with lung cancer risk at the gene level (p=0.02), and the A allele of rs246079 was associated with an increased risk (per A allele OR 1.15, 95% CI1.01-1.31). We observed stronger associations with UNG rs246079 among individuals who carried the risk genotypes (AG/AA) for MSH5 rs3131379 (pinteraction= 0.038). Our results provide additional evidence to suggest that the MSH5/BAT3 locus is associated with increased lung cancer risk among smokers, and that associations with other SNPs may vary depending upon MSH5/BAT3 genotype. Future studies to examine this possibility are warranted.
International Journal of Molecular Epidemiology and Genetics 01/2013; 4(1):11-34.