Inherited determinants of ovarian cancer survival (Clin. Cancer Res.)

PURPOSE: Due to variation of outcome among cases, we sought to examine whether overall survival in ovarian cancer was associated with common inherited variants in 227 candidate genes from ovarian cancer-related pathways including angiogenesis, inflammation, detoxification, glycosylation, one-carbon transfer, apoptosis, cell cycle regulation, and cellular senescence.

EXPERIMENTAL DESIGN: Blood samples were obtained from 325 women with invasive epithelial ovarian cancer diagnosed at the Mayo Clinic from 1999 to 2006. During a median follow-up of 3.8 years (range, 0.1-8.6 years), 157 deaths were observed. Germline DNA was analyzed at 1,416 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNP). For all patients, and for 203 with serous subtype, we assessed the overall significance of each gene and pathway, and estimated risk of death via hazard ratios (HR) and 95% confidence intervals (CI), adjusting for known prognostic factors.

RESULTS: Variation within angiogenesis was most strongly associated with survival time overall (P = 0.03) and among patients with serous cancer (P = 0.05), particularly for EIF2B5 rs4912474 (all patients HR, 0.69; 95% CI, 0.54-0.89; P = 0.004), VEGFC rs17697305 (serous subtype HR, 2.29; 95% CI, 1.34-3.92; P = 0.003), and four SNPs in VHL. Variation within the inflammation pathway was borderline significant (all patients, P = 0.09), and SNPs in CCR3, IL1B, IL18, CCL2, and ALOX5 which correlated with survival time are worthy of follow-up.

CONCLUSION: An extensive multiple-pathway assessment found evidence that inherited differences may play a role in outcome of ovarian cancer patients, particularly in genes within the angiogenesis and inflammation pathways. Our work supports efforts to target such mediators for therapeutic gain.

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