DNA methylation level is marker of breast cancer risk

DNA methylation level is marker of breast cancer risk

(HealthDay) -- Women with high levels of white blood cell (WBC) DNA methylation at the ATM loci have a significantly increased risk of breast cancer, regardless of family history or menopausal status, according a study published in the May 1 issue of Cancer Research.

Kevin Brennan, of Imperial College in London, and colleagues evaluated WBC as a biomarker of using prediagnostic blood samples from three cohorts. DNA methylation at two ATM intragenic loci, ATMmvp2a and ATMmvp2b, and genome-wide methylation of long interspersed nuclear element-1 (LINE1) repetitive elements were analyzed. Methylation was quantified in 640 incident cases of and 741 controls.

The researchers found that patients with WBC DNA methylation at the ATMmvp2a loci in the highest quintile had a significantly increased risk of breast cancer (odds ratio, 1.89), irrespective of family history or menopausal status. This relationship was more consistently observed in women under the age of 60 years compared with older women, and was significant in two of the cohorts. There was no difference between cases and controls in methylation of ATMmvp2b or LINE1.

"In conclusion, our findings on the association between ATM hypermethylation in WBC DNA before diagnosis and the risk of developing breast cancer provide further support for the investigation of common epigenetic variability as risk markers for breast and other cancers," the authors write.

More information: Abstract
Full Text

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

New risk factor for developing breast cancer

Nov 10, 2010

An Australian research team from the Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre, the University of Melbourne and the University of Queensland has identified a new risk factor for developing breast cancer. This has been published online ...

Recommended for you

All-clear for nonlinear optical imaging

3 minutes ago

High power femto-second laser pulses used for in vivo nonlinear optical imaging can form DNA products, which may lead to carcinogenesis. A modified cancer risk model now shows that the cancer risk is negligible ...

Pain and itch may be signs of skin cancer

16 hours ago

Asking patients if a suspicious skin lesion is painful or itchy may help doctors decide whether the spot is likely to be cancerous, according to a new study headed by Gil Yosipovitch, MD, Chairman of the Department of Dermatology ...

Genetics of cancer: Non-coding DNA can finally be decoded

20 hours ago

Cancer is a disease of the genome resulting from a combination of genetic modifications (or mutations). We inherit from our parents strong or weak predispositions to developing certain kinds of cancer; in addition, we also ...

User comments