Project description:Approximately 15-30% of all breast cancer tumors are estrogen receptor negative (ER-). Compared with ER-positive (ER+) disease they have an earlier age at onset and worse prognosis. Despite the vast number of risk variants identified for numerous cancer types, only seven loci have been unambiguously identified for ER-negative breast cancer. With the aim of identifying new susceptibility SNPs for this disease we performed a pleiotropic genome-wide association study (GWAS). We selected 3079 SNPs associated with a human complex trait or disease at genome-wide significance level (P<5 × 10(-8)) to perform a secondary analysis of an ER-negative GWAS from the National Cancer Institute's Breast and Prostate Cancer Cohort Consortium (BPC3), including 1998 cases and 2305 controls from prospective studies. We then tested the top ten associations (i.e. with the lowest P-values) using three additional populations with a total sample size of 3509 ER+ cases, 2543 ER- cases and 7031 healthy controls. None of the 3079 selected variants in the BPC3 ER-GWAS were significant at the adjusted threshold. 186 variants were associated with ER- breast cancer risk at a conventional threshold of P<0.05, with P-values ranging from 0.049 to 2.3 × 10(-4). None of the variants reached statistical significance in the replication phase. In conclusion, this study did not identify any novel susceptibility loci for ER-breast cancer using a "pleiotropic approach".
Project description:Two independent regions within HNF1B are consistently identified in prostate and ovarian cancer genome-wide association studies (GWAS); their functional roles are unclear. We link prostate cancer (PC) risk SNPs rs11649743 and rs3760511 with elevated HNF1B gene expression and allele-specific epigenetic silencing, and outline a mechanism by which common risk variants could effect functional changes that increase disease risk: functional assays suggest that HNF1B is a pro-differentiation factor that suppresses epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition (EMT) in unmethylated, healthy tissues. This tumor-suppressor activity is lost when HNF1B is silenced by promoter methylation in the progression to PC. Epigenetic inactivation of HNF1B in ovarian cancer also associates with known risk SNPs, with a similar impact on EMT. This represents one of the first comprehensive studies into the pleiotropic role of a GWAS-associated transcription factor across distinct cancer types, and is the first to describe a conserved role for a multi-cancer genetic risk factor.
Project description:There is evidence that progesterone plays a role in the aetiology of invasive epithelial ovarian cancer. Therefore, genes involved in pathways that regulate progesterone may be candidates for susceptibility to this disease. Previous studies have suggested that genetic variants in the progesterone receptor gene (PGR) may be associated with ovarian cancer risk, although results have been inconsistent. We have established an international consortium to pool resources and data from many ovarian cancer case-control studies in an effort to identify variants that influence risk. In this study, three PGR single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs), for which previous data have suggested they affect ovarian cancer risk, were examined. These were +331 C/T (rs10895068), PROGINS (rs1042838), and a 3' variant (rs608995). A total of 4788 ovarian cancer cases and 7614 controls from 12 case-control studies were included in this analysis. Unconditional logistic regression was used to model the association between each SNP and ovarian cancer risk and two-sided P-values are reported. Overall, risk of ovarian cancer was not associated with any of the three variants studied. However, in histopathological subtype analyses, we found a statistically significant association between risk of endometrioid ovarian cancer and the PROGINS allele (n=651, OR=1.17, 95% CI=1.01-1.36, P=0.036). We also observed borderline evidence of an association between risk of endometrioid ovarian cancer and the +331C/T variant (n=725 cases; OR=0.80, 95% CI 0.62-1.04, P=0.100). These data suggest that while these three variants in the PGR are not associated with ovarian cancer overall, the PROGINS variant may play a modest role in risk of endometrioid ovarian cancer.
Project description:Estrogenic hormone replacement therapy increases the risk of developing ovarian cancer, and estrogen promotes tumour initiation and growth in mouse models of this disease. GREB1 (Growth regulation by estrogen in breast cancer 1) is an ESR1 (estrogen receptor 1)-upregulated protein which may mediate estrogen action. GREB1 knockdown prevents hormone-driven proliferation of several breast and prostate cancer cell lines and prolongs survival of mice engrafted with ovarian cancer cells, but its mechanism of action remains unclear. In this study, we explored GREB1 function in ovarian cancer. GREB1 overexpression in ovarian cancer cell lines increased cell proliferation and migration and promoted a mesenchymal morphology associated with increased Col1a2, which encodes a collagen I subunit. GREB1 knockdown inhibited proliferation and promoted an epithelial morphology associated with decreased Col1a2. In human tissues, GREB1 was expressed in all ESR1-expressing tissues throughout the normal female reproductive tract, in addition to several tissues that did not show ESR1 expression. In a TMA of ovarian cancer cases, GREB1 was expressed in 75-85% of serous, endometrioid, mucinous, and clear cell carcinomas. Serous, endometrioid, and mucinous ovarian cancers were almost always positive for either ESR1 or GREB1, suggesting a possible reliance on signalling through ESR1 and/or GREB1. Targeting GREB1 may inhibit tumour-promoting pathways both downstream and independent of ESR1 and is therefore a possible treatment strategy worthy of further investigation.
Project description:OBJECTIVE:Cytokeratin 5 (CK5) is an epithelial cell marker implicated in stem and progenitor cell activity in glandular reproductive tissues and endocrine and chemotherapy resistance in estrogen receptor (ER)(+) breast cancer. The goal of this study was to determine the prevalence of CK5 expression in ovarian cancer and the response of CK5(+) cell populations to cisplatin therapy. MATERIALS AND METHODS:Cytokeratin 5 expression was evaluated in 2 ovarian tissue microarrays, representing 137 neoplasms, and 6 ovarian cancer cell lines. Cell lines were treated with IC(50) (half-maximal inhibitory concentration) cisplatin, and the prevalence of CK5(+) cells pretreatment and posttreatment was determined. Proliferation of CK5(+) versus CK5(-) cell populations was determined using 5-bromo-2'-deoxyuridine incorporation. Chemotherapy-induced apoptosis in CK5(+) versus CK5(-) cells was measured using immunohistochemical staining for cleaved caspase-3. RESULTS:Cytokeratin 5 was expressed in 39.3% (42 of 107) of epithelial ovarian cancers with a range of 1% to 80% positive cells. Serous and endometrioid histologic subtypes had the highest percentage of CK5(+) specimens. Cytokeratin 5 expression correlated with ER positivity (38 of 42 CK5(+) tumors were also ER(+)). Cytokeratin 5 was expressed in 5 of 6 overall and 4 of 4 ER(+) epithelial ovarian cancer cell lines ranging from 2.4% to 52.7% positive cells. Cytokeratin 5(+) compared with CK5(-) cells were slower proliferating. The prevalence of CK5(+) cells increased after 48-hour cisplatin treatment in 4 of 5 cell lines tested. Cytokeratin 5(+) ovarian cancer cells compared with CK5(-) ovarian cancer cells were more resistant to cisplatin-induced apoptosis. CONCLUSIONS:Cytokeratin 5 is expressed in a significant proportion of epithelial ovarian cancers and represents a slower proliferating chemoresistant subpopulation that may warrant cotargeting in combination therapy.
Project description:BACKGROUND:In ovarian cancer, the role of estrogen receptors (ERs), particularly of ER?, being suggested as tumor suppressor in breast and prostate cancer, remains unclear. We examined the expression of nuclear and cytoplasmic ER? in ovarian cancer and correlated it with expression of ovarian cancer markers CA125, CEA and CA72-4, steroid hormone receptors ER? and PR, cancer-associated genes EGFR, p53, HER2 and proliferation marker Ki-67. Additionally we examined to what extent expression of ER? and the other proteins affects survival of ovarian cancer patients. METHODS:We established a tissue microarray from 171 ovarian cancer patients and performed immunohistochemical analyses of the mentioned proteins. RESULTS:Nuclear ER? was detected in 47.31% of the ovarian cancer tissues and cytoplasmic expression of this receptor was observed in 23.08%. Nuclear expression of ER? was significantly decreased in the G3 subgroup compared to better differentiated cancers (p <? 0.01) and correlated with ovarian cancer markers CEA (95% CI 0.1598-0.4465; p <? 0.0001) and CA72-4 (95% CI 0.05953-0.3616; p?<? 0.01). Cytoplasmic ER? expression correlated with EGFR levels (95% CI 0.1059-0.4049; p <? 0.001). ER? expression was associated with expression of CA125 and PR. Overall survival of patients with tumors expressing cytoplasmic ER? was significant longer compared to those with ER?-negative ovarian cancer (chi-square statistic of the log-rank, p <?0.05). Progression-free survival was dependent on expression of PR (chi-square statistic of the log-rank, p?<?0.05) and Ki-67 (p =?0.05). CONCLUSIONS:Our data suggest an important, but distinct role of nuclear and cytoplasmic ER? expression in ovarian cancer and encourage further studies on its role in this cancer entity.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Few biomarkers of ovarian cancer prognosis have been established, partly because subtype-specific associations might be obscured in studies combining all histopathological subtypes. We examined whether tumour expression of the progesterone receptor (PR) and oestrogen receptor (ER) was associated with subtype-specific survival. METHODS:12 studies participating in the Ovarian Tumor Tissue Analysis consortium contributed tissue microarray sections and clinical data to our study. Participants included in our analysis had been diagnosed with invasive serous, mucinous, endometrioid, or clear-cell carcinomas of the ovary. For a patient to be eligible, tissue microarrays, clinical follow-up data, age at diagnosis, and tumour grade and stage had to be available. Clinical data were obtained from medical records, cancer registries, death certificates, pathology reports, and review of histological slides. PR and ER statuses were assessed by central immunohistochemistry analysis done by masked pathologists. PR and ER staining was defined as negative (<1% tumour cell nuclei), weak (1 to <50%), or strong (?50%). Associations with disease-specific survival were assessed. FINDINGS:2933 women with invasive epithelial ovarian cancer were included: 1742 with high-grade serous carcinoma, 110 with low-grade serous carcinoma, 207 with mucinous carcinoma, 484 with endometrioid carcinoma, and 390 with clear-cell carcinoma. PR expression was associated with improved disease-specific survival in endometrioid carcinoma (log-rank p<0·0001) and high-grade serous carcinoma (log-rank p=0·0006), and ER expression was associated with improved disease-specific survival in endometrioid carcinoma (log-rank p<0·0001). We recorded no significant associations for mucinous, clear-cell, or low-grade serous carcinoma. Positive hormone-receptor expression (weak or strong staining for PR or ER, or both) was associated with significantly improved disease-specific survival in endometrioid carcinoma compared with negative hormone-receptor expression, independent of study site, age, stage, and grade (hazard ratio 0·33, 95% CI 0·21-0·51; p<0·0001). Strong PR expression was independently associated with improved disease-specific survival in high-grade serous carcinoma (0·71, 0·55-0·91; p=0·0080), but weak PR expression was not (1·02, 0·89-1·18; p=0·74). INTERPRETATION:PR and ER are prognostic biomarkers for endometrioid and high-grade serous ovarian cancers. Clinical trials, stratified by subtype and biomarker status, are needed to establish whether hormone-receptor status predicts response to endocrine treatment, and whether it could guide personalised treatment for ovarian cancer. FUNDING:Carraresi Foundation and others.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Regulatory T (Treg) cells, a subset of CD4+ T lymphocytes, are mediators of immunosuppression in cancer, and, thus, variants in genes encoding Treg cell immune molecules could be associated with ovarian cancer. METHODS:In a population of 15,596 epithelial ovarian cancer (EOC) cases and 23,236 controls, we measured genetic associations of 1,351 SNPs in Treg cell pathway genes with odds of ovarian cancer and tested pathway and gene-level associations, overall and by histotype, for the 25 genes, using the admixture likelihood (AML) method. The most significant single SNP associations were tested for correlation with expression levels in 44 ovarian cancer patients. RESULTS:The most significant global associations for all genes in the pathway were seen in endometrioid ( p = 0.082) and clear cell ( p = 0.083), with the most significant gene level association seen with TGFBR2 ( p = 0.001) and clear cell EOC. Gene associations with histotypes at p < 0.05 included: IL12 ( p = 0.005 and p = 0.008, serous and high-grade serous, respectively), IL8RA ( p = 0.035, endometrioid and mucinous), LGALS1 ( p = 0.03, mucinous), STAT5B ( p = 0.022, clear cell), TGFBR1 ( p = 0.021 endometrioid) and TGFBR2 ( p = 0.017 and p = 0.025, endometrioid and mucinous, respectively). CONCLUSIONS:Common inherited gene variation in Treg cell pathways shows some evidence of germline genetic contribution to odds of EOC that varies by histologic subtype and may be associated with mRNA expression of immune-complex receptor in EOC patients.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Previously, small studies have found that BRCA1 and BRCA2 breast tumors differ in their pathology. Analysis of larger datasets of mutation carriers should allow further tumor characterization. METHODS:We used data from 4,325 BRCA1 and 2,568 BRCA2 mutation carriers to analyze the pathology of invasive breast, ovarian, and contralateral breast cancers. RESULTS:There was strong evidence that the proportion of estrogen receptor (ER)-negative breast tumors decreased with age at diagnosis among BRCA1 (P-trend = 1.2 × 10(-5)), but increased with age at diagnosis among BRCA2, carriers (P-trend = 6.8 × 10(-6)). The proportion of triple-negative tumors decreased with age at diagnosis in BRCA1 carriers but increased with age at diagnosis of BRCA2 carriers. In both BRCA1 and BRCA2 carriers, ER-negative tumors were of higher histologic grade than ER-positive tumors (grade 3 vs. grade 1; P = 1.2 × 10(-13) for BRCA1 and P = 0.001 for BRCA2). ER and progesterone receptor (PR) expression were independently associated with mutation carrier status [ER-positive odds ratio (OR) for BRCA2 = 9.4, 95% CI: 7.0-12.6 and PR-positive OR = 1.7, 95% CI: 1.3-2.3, under joint analysis]. Lobular tumors were more likely to be BRCA2-related (OR for BRCA2 = 3.3, 95% CI: 2.4-4.4; P = 4.4 × 10(-14)), and medullary tumors BRCA1-related (OR for BRCA2 = 0.25, 95% CI: 0.18-0.35; P = 2.3 × 10(-15)). ER-status of the first breast cancer was predictive of ER-status of asynchronous contralateral breast cancer (P = 0.0004 for BRCA1; P = 0.002 for BRCA2). There were no significant differences in ovarian cancer morphology between BRCA1 and BRCA2 carriers (serous: 67%; mucinous: 1%; endometrioid: 12%; clear-cell: 2%). CONCLUSIONS/IMPACT: Pathologic characteristics of BRCA1 and BRCA2 tumors may be useful for improving risk-prediction algorithms and informing clinical strategies for screening and prophylaxis.