JOURNAL ARTICLE

Vitamin D receptor gene polymorphisms and prognosis of breast cancer among African-American and Hispanic women

Dhruva K Mishra, Yanyuan Wu, Marianna Sarkissyan, Suren Sarkissyan, Zujian Chen, Xiying Shang, May Ong, David Heber, H Phillip Koeffler, Jaydutt V Vadgama
PloS One 2013, 8 (3): e57967
23554871

BACKGROUND: Vitamin D plays a role in cancer development and acts through the vitamin D receptor (VDR). Although African-Americans have the lowest levels of serum vitamin D, there is a dearth of information on VDR gene polymorphisms and breast cancer among African-Americans and Hispanics. This study examines whether VDR gene polymorphisms are associated with breast cancer in these cohorts.

METHODS: Blood was collected from 232 breast cancer patients (Cases) and 349 non-cancer subjects (Controls). Genotyping for four polymorphic variants of VDR (FokI, BsmI, TaqI and ApaI) was performed using the PCR-RFLP method.

RESULTS: An increased association of the VDR-Fok1 f allele with breast cancer was observed in African-Americans (OR = 1.9, p = 0.07). Furthermore, the FbTA, FbtA and fbtA haplotypes were associated with breast cancer among African-Americans (p<0.05). Latinas were more likely to have the VDR-ApaI alleles (Aa or aa) (p = 0.008). The VDR-ApaI aa genotype was significantly associated with poorly-differentiated breast tumors (p = 0.04) in combined Cases. Kaplan-Meier survival analysis showed decreased 5-year disease-free-survival (DFS) in breast cancer patients who had the VDR-Fok1 FF genotype (p<0.05). The Cox regression with multivariate analysis revealed the independent predictor value of the VDR-FokI polymorphism for DFS. The other three variants of VDR (BsmI, TaqI and ApaI) were not associated with disease outcome.

CONCLUSIONS: VDR haplotypes are associated with breast cancer in African-Americans, but not in Hispanic/Latinas. The VDR-FokI FF genotype is linked with poor prognosis in African-American women with breast cancer.

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