Germline MC1R status influences somatic mutation burden in melanoma.
ABSTRACT: The major genetic determinants of cutaneous melanoma risk in the general population are disruptive variants (R alleles) in the melanocortin 1 receptor (MC1R) gene. These alleles are also linked to red hair, freckling, and sun sensitivity, all of which are known melanoma phenotypic risk factors. Here we report that in melanomas and for somatic C>T mutations, a signature linked to sun exposure, the expected single-nucleotide variant count associated with the presence of an R allele is estimated to be 42% (95% CI, 15-76%) higher than that among persons without an R allele. This figure is comparable to the expected mutational burden associated with an additional 21 years of age. We also find significant and similar enrichment of non-C>T mutation classes supporting a role for additional mutagenic processes in melanoma development in individuals carrying R alleles.
Project description:Melanocytic nevi (moles) and freckles are well known biomarkers of melanoma risk, and they are influenced by similar UV light exposures and genetic susceptibilities to those that increase melanoma risk. Nevertheless, the selective interactions between UV exposures and nevus and freckling genes remain largely undescribed.We conducted a longitudinal study from ages 6 through 10 years in 477 Colorado children who had annual information collected for sun exposure, sun protection behaviors, and full body skin exams. MC1R and HERC2/OCA2 rs12913832 were genotyped and linear mixed models were used to identify main and interaction effects.All measures of sun exposure (chronic, sunburns, and waterside vacations) contributed to total nevus counts, and cumulative chronic exposure acted as the major driver of nevus development. Waterside vacations strongly increased total nevus counts in children with rs12913832 blue eye color alleles and facial freckling scores in those with MC1R red hair color variants. Sunburns increased the numbers of larger nevi (?2 mm) in subjects with certain MC1R and rs12913832 genotypes.Complex interactions between different UV exposure profiles and genotype combinations determine nevus numbers and size, and the degree of facial freckling.Our findings emphasize the importance of implementing sun-protective behavior in childhood regardless of genetic make-up, although children with particular genetic variants may benefit from specifically targeted preventive measures to counteract their inherent risk of melanoma. Moreover, we demonstrate, for the first time, that longitudinal studies are a highly powered tool to uncover new gene-environment interactions that increase cancer risk.
Project description:Risk of cutaneous malignant melanoma (CMM) is increased in sun-exposed whites, particularly those with a pale complexion. This study was designed to investigate the relationship of the melanocortin-1 receptor (MC1R) genotype to CMM risk, controlled for pigmentation phenotype. We report the occurrence of five common MC1R variants in an Australian population-based sample of 460 individuals with familial and sporadic CMM and 399 control individuals-and their relationship to such other risk factors as skin, hair, and eye color; freckling; and nevus count. There was a strong relationship between MC1R variants and hair color and skin type. Moreover, MC1R variants were found in 72% of the individuals with CMM, whereas only 56% of the control individuals carried at least one variant (P<.001), a finding independent of strength of family history of melanoma. Three active alleles (Arg151Cys, Arg160Trp, and Asp294His), previously associated with red hair, doubled CMM risk for each additional allele carried (odds ratio 2.0; 95% confidence interval 1. 6-2.6). No such independent association could be demonstrated with the Val60Leu and Asp84Glu variants. Among pale-skinned individuals alone, this association between CMM and MC1R variants was absent, but it persisted among those reporting a medium or olive/dark complexion. We conclude that the effect that MC1R variant alleles have on CMM is partly mediated via determination of pigmentation phenotype and that these alleles may also negate the protection normally afforded by darker skin coloring in some members of this white population.
Project description:Variants of the melanocortin-1 receptor (MC1R) gene have been linked to sun-sensitive skin types and hair colour, and may independently play a role in susceptibility to cutaneous melanoma. To assess the role of MC1R variants in uveal melanoma, we have analysed a cohort of 350 patients for the changes within the major region of the gene displaying sequence variation. Eight variants were detected - V60L, D84E, V92M, R151C, I155T, R160W, R163Q and D294H - 63% of these patients being hetero- or homozygous for at least one variant. Standard melanoma risk factor data were available on 119 of the patients. MC1R variants were significantly associated with hair colour (P=0.03) but not skin or eye colour. The frequency of the variants detected in the 350 patients was comparable with those in the general population, and comparison of the cumulative tumour distribution by age at diagnosis in carriers and noncarriers provided no evidence that MC1R variants confer an increased risk of uveal melanoma. We interpret the data as indicating that MC1R variants do not appear to be major determinants of susceptibility to uveal melanoma.
Project description:Mutations in the exons of the cyclin-dependent kinase inhibitor gene CDKN2A are melanoma-predisposition alleles which have high penetrance, although they have low population frequencies. In contrast, variants of the melanocortin-1 receptor gene, MC1R, confer much lower melanoma risk but are common in European populations. Fifteen Australian CDKN2A mutation-carrying melanoma pedigrees were assessed for MC1R genotype, to test for possible modifier effects on melanoma risk. A CDKN2A mutation in the presence of a homozygous consensus MC1R genotype had a raw penetrance of 50%, with a mean age at onset of 58.1 years. When an MC1R variant allele was also present, the raw penetrance of the CDKN2A mutation increased to 84%, with a mean age at onset of 37.8 years (P=.01). The presence of a CDKN2A mutation gave a hazard ratio of 13.35, and the hazard ratio of 3.72 for MC1R variant alleles was also significant. The impact of MC1R variants on risk of melanoma was mediated largely through the action of three common alleles, Arg151Cys, Arg160Trp, and Asp294His, that have previously been associated with red hair, fair skin, and skin sensitivity to ultraviolet light.
Project description:The contribution of melanocortin-1 receptor (MC1R) gene variants to the development of early-onset melanoma is unknown. Using an Australian population-based, case-control-family study, we sequenced MC1R for 565 cases with invasive cutaneous melanoma diagnosed between ages 18 and 39 years, 409 unrelated controls and 518 sibling controls. Variants were classified a priori into "R" variants (D84E, R142H, R151C, I155T, R160W, D294H) and "r" variants (all other nonsynonymous variants). We estimated odds ratios (OR) for melanoma using unconditional (unrelated controls) and conditional (sibling controls) logistic regression. The prevalence of having at least one R or r variant was 86% for cases, 73% for unrelated controls and 81% for sibling controls. R151C conferred the highest risk (per allele OR 2.57, 95% confidence interval 1.86-3.56 for the case-unrelated-control analysis and 1.70 (1.12-2.60) for the case-sibling-control analysis). When mutually adjusted, the ORs per R allele were 2.23 (1.77-2.80) and 2.06 (1.47-2.88), respectively, from the two types of analysis, and the ORs per r allele were 1.69 (1.33-2.13) and 1.25 (0.88-1.79), respectively. The associations were stronger for men and those with none or few nevi or with high childhood sun exposure. Adjustment for phenotype, nevi and sun exposure attenuated the overall log OR for R variants by approximately 18% but had lesser influence on r variant risk estimates. MC1R variants explained about 21% of the familial aggregation of melanoma. Some MC1R variants are important determinants of early-onset melanoma. The strength of association with melanoma differs according to the type and number of variants.
Project description:Melanoma is a lethal form of skin cancer. Skin pigmentation, which is regulated by the melanocortin 1 receptor (MC1R), is an effective protection against melanoma. However, the endogenous MC1R agonists lack selectivity for the MC1R and thus can have side effects. The use of noncanonical amino acids in previous MC1R ligand development raises safety concerns. Here we report the development of the first potent and selective hMC1R agonist with only canonical amino acids. Using ?-MSH as a template, we developed a peptide, [Leu3, Leu7, Phe8]-?-MSH-NH2 (compound 5), which is 16-fold selective for the hMC1R (EC50 = 4.5 nM) versus other melanocortin receptors. Conformational studies revealed a constrained conformation for this linear peptide. Molecular docking demonstrated a hydrophobic binding pocket for the melanocortin 1 receptor. In vivo pigmentation study shows high potency and short duration. [Leu3, Leu7, Phe8]-?-MSH-NH2 is ideal for inducing short-term skin pigmentation without sun for melanoma prevention.
Project description:Variation in the melanocortin-1receptor (MC1R) gene is associated with pigmentary phenotypes and risk of malignant melanoma. Few studies have reported on MC1R variation with respect to tumor characteristics, especially clinically important prognostic features. We examined associations between MC1R variants and histopathological melanoma characteristics. Study participants were enrolled from nine geographic regions in Australia, Canada, Italy and the United States and were genotyped for MC1R variants classified as high-risk [R] (D84E, R142H, R151C, R160W, and D294H, all nonsense and insertion/deletion) or low-risk [r] (all other nonsynonymous) variants. Tissue was available for 2,160 white participants of the Genes, Environment and Melanoma (GEM) Study with a first incident primary melanoma diagnosis, and underwent centralized pathologic review. No statistically significant associations were observed between MC1R variants and AJCC established prognostic tumor characteristics: Breslow thickness, presence of mitoses or presence of ulceration. However, MC1R was significantly associated with anatomic site of melanoma (p = 0.002) and a positive association was observed between carriage of more than one [R] variant and melanomas arising on the arms (OR = 2.39; 95% CI: 1.40, 4.09). We also observed statistically significant differences between sun-sensitive and sun-resistant individuals with respect to associations between MC1R genotype and AJCC prognostic tumor characteristics. Our results suggest inherited variation in MC1R may play an influential role in anatomic site presentation of melanomas and may differ with respect to skin pigmentation phenotype.
Project description:Melanocortin-1 receptor (MC1R) is a marker of melanoma risk in populations of European ancestry. However, MC1R effects on survival are much less studied. We investigated associations between variation at MC1R and survival in an international, population-based series of single primary melanoma patients enrolled into the Genes, Environment, and Melanoma study. MC1R genotype data was available for 2,200 participants with a first incident primary melanoma diagnosis. We estimated the association of MC1R genotypes with melanoma-specific survival (i.e., death caused by melanoma) and overall survival using COX proportional hazards modeling, adjusting for established prognostic factors for melanoma. We also conducted stratified analyses by Breslow thickness, tumor site, phenotypic index, and age. In addition, we evaluated haplotypes involving polymorphisms near the Agouti signaling protein gene (ASIP) locus for their impacts on survival. Melanoma-specific survival was inversely associated with carriage of MC1R variants in the absence of consensus alleles compared to carriage of at least one consensus allele (hazard ratio (HR) = 0.60; 95% confidence interval (CI): 0.40, 0.90). MC1R results for overall survival were consistent with no association. We did not observe any statistical evidence of heterogeneity of effect estimates in stratified analyses. We observed increased hazard of melanoma-specific death among carriers of the risk haplotype TG near the ASIP locus (HR = 1.37; 95% CI: 0.91, 2.04) when compared to carriers of the most common GG haplotype. Similar results were noted for overall survival. Upon examining the ASIP TG/TG diplotype, we observed considerably increased hazard of melanoma-specific death (HR = 5.11; 95% CI: 1.88, 13.88) compared to carriers of the most common GG/GG diplotype. Our data suggest improved melanoma-specific survival among carriers of two inherited MC1R variants.
Project description:Melanocortin-1 receptor (MC1R) variants have been associated with BRAF (v-raf murine sarcoma viral oncogene homolog B1) mutations in non-CSD (chronic solar-damaged) melanomas in an Italian and an American population. We studied an independent Italian population of 330 subjects (165 melanoma patients and 165 controls) to verify and estimate the magnitude of this association and to explore possible effect modifiers. We sequenced MC1R in all subjects and exon 15 of BRAF in 92/165 melanoma patients. Patients with MC1R variants had a high risk of carrying BRAF mutations in melanomas (odds ratio (OR)=7.0, 95% confidence interval (CI)=2.1-23.8) that increased with the number of MC1R variants and variants associated with red hair color. Combining these subjects with the originally reported Italian population (513 subjects overall), MC1R variant carriers had a 5- to 15-fold increased risk of BRAF-mutant melanomas based on carrying one or two variants (P<0.0001, test for trend), and regardless of signs of chronic solar damage. In contrast, no association with BRAF-negative melanomas was found (OR=1.0, 95% CI=0.6-1.6). No characteristics of subjects or melanomas, including age, nevus count, pigmentation, and melanoma thickness or location on chronically or intermittently sun-exposed body sites, substantially modified this association, although results could be affected by the small numbers in some categories. This study confirms that the known MC1R-melanoma risk association is confined to subjects whose melanomas harbor BRAF mutations.
Project description:The melanocortin 1 receptor (MC1R) mediates the tanning response through induction of cAMP and downstream pigmentary enzymes. Diminished function alleles of MC1R are associated with decreased tanning and increased melanoma risk, which has been attributed to increased rates of mutation. We have found that MC1R or cAMP signaling also directly decreases proliferation in melanoma cell lines. MC1R overexpression, treatment with the MC1R ligand, or treatment with small-molecule activators of cAMP signaling causes delayed progression from G2 into mitosis. This delay is caused by phosphorylation and inhibition of cdc25B, a cyclin dependent kinase 1-activating phosphatase, and is rescued by expression of a cdc25B mutant that cannot be phosphorylated at the serine 323 residue. These results show that MC1R and cAMP signaling can directly inhibit melanoma growth through regulation of the G2/M checkpoint.