Mammographic density and candidate gene variants: A twins and sisters study

Jennifer Stone, Lyle C. Gurrin, Graham B. Byrnes, Christopher J. Schroen, Susan A. Treloar, Emma J.D. Padilla, Gillian S. Dite, Melissa C. Southey, Vanessa M. Hayes, John L. Hopper

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11 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Background: Mammographic density, the light/white radiographic appearance on a mammogram that represents connective and epithelial tissue, is a strong risk factor for breast cancer which seems to be highly heritable. Little is known about its genetic determinants. Methods: We studied 457 women from 207 sisterhoods (104 monozygotic twins, 182 dizygotic twins, and 171 singletons). Percentage mammographic density (PMD) as well as dense area and nondense area were calculated using a computer-assisted method. We measured six single nucleotide polymorphisms from six candidate genes (COMT, HSD3B1, IGFBP3, HER2, XPD, and XRCC3). Associations between genotypes and mammographic measures were tested (a) cross-sectionally using a multivariate normal model fitted using FISHER that allowed separate correlations for monozygotic, dizygotic, and nontwin pairs and (b) within sister pairs using paired t tests. Results: Cross-sectionally, each additional copy of the HSD3B1 Asn367Thr variant allele was associated with lower PMD (-3.47% per allele; SE = 1.65; P = 0.035). Within-pair regression estimates confirmed this association. There was no evidence for an association between the mammographic density measures and any of the other variants studied. Conclusion: We have replicated an association between a variant in the HSD3B1 gene and PMD, which suggests that HSD3B1 may be genetic determinant of mammographic density.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1479-1484
Number of pages6
JournalCancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers and Prevention
Volume16
Issue number7
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jul 2007
Externally publishedYes

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