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Genetic variability in IL23R and risk of colorectal adenoma and colorectal cancer

Inflammatory processes, including, specifically, the inflammatory conditions Crohn’s disease (CD) and ulcerative colitis (UC) predispose to colorectal cancer. Interleukin-23 is involved in pro-inflammatory signaling; genetic variation in the interleukin-23 receptor (IL23R) has been consistently associated with CD and UC risk. In three case-control studies of colorectal adenoma (n=485 cases/578 controls), colon cancer (n=1424 cases/1780 controls) and rectal cancer (n=583 cases/775 controls), we investigated associations with 18 candidate and tagSNPs in IL23R. The three studies used an identical Illumina GoldenGate assay, allowing thorough investigation across stages and locations of colorectal neoplasia. We further explored associations with molecular cancer subtypes (MSI+, CIMP+, KRAS2mut, TP53mut). In this comprehensive study of genetic variability in IL23R across the spectrum of colorectal carcinogenesis, as well as within colon and rectal tumor molecular subtypes, we observed associations between SNPs in IL23R and risk of rectal cancer: the 88413 C>A (rs10889675) and 69450 C>A (rs7542081) polymorphisms were associated with decreased rectal cancer risk overall (p-trend=0.04 and 0.05 respectively), and specifically with rectal tumors bearing a TP53 mutation (88413 CA/AA vs. CC OR: 0.66; 95% CI: 0.46-94; 69450 CA/AA vs. CC OR: 0.60; 95% CI: 0.37-0.98). However, none of associations remained statistically significant after correction for multiple testing. These data provide some evidence that genetic variability in IL23R may contribute to rectal cancer risk and should be evaluated in additional studies.

Authors: Poole EM; Curtin K; Hsu L; Duggan DJ; Makar KW; Xiao L; Carlson CS; Caan BJ; Potter JD; Slattery ML; Ulrich CM

Cancer Epidemiol. 2012 Apr;36(2):e104-10. Epub 2011 Dec 6.

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