ABO Polymorphism & Pancreatic Cancer
A statistically significant difference was observed in the susceptibility to stomach and pancreatic cancers among individuals with different ABO blood groups in classic association studies. However, those reports compared the incidences between the diseased population and the corresponding healthy population. Because 25% difference was not so dramatic, those results were received with some distrust in the field.
This situation has entirely changed after one paper was published in Nature Genetics in September last year. In the paper entitled, “Genome-wide association study identifies variants in the ABO locus associated with susceptibility to pancreatic cancer”, Amundadottir et al. genotyped 558,542 SNPs in 1,896 individuals with pancreatic cancer and 1,939 controls drawn from 12 prospective cohorts plus one hospital-based case-control study. They also conducted a combined analysis of these groups plus an additional 2,457 affected individuals and 2,654 controls from eight case-control studies, adjusting for study, sex, ancestry and five principal components. They found the highest association between SNPs and pancreatic cancer in the ABO blood group locus (SNP rs505922: combined P = 5.37 x 10(-8); multiplicative per-allele odds ratio 1.20; 95% confidence interval 1.12-1.28). As opposed to previous targeted studies of the ABO blood groups, this genome-wide association study (GWAS) conclusively revealed the involvement of the ABO genetic locus with pancreatic carcinogenesis. Another group has confirmed the association between the ABO polymorphism and pancreatic cancer (Wolpin et al. Pancreatic Cancer Risk and ABO Blood Group Alleles: Results from the Pancreatic Cancer Cohort Consortium. Cancer Res. 2010: 70(3); 1015-1023).
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