Genetic epidemiology of prostate cancer

University dissertation from Umeå : Umeå university

Abstract: Prostate cancer is a major health burden throughout the world, yet the etiology of prostate cancer is poorly understood. Evidence has accumulated supporting the existence of a hereditary form of this disease. Improved understanding of the genetic mechanisms underlying the development and progression of prostate cancer would be a major advance for improved prevention, detection and treatment strategies. This thesis evaluates different aspects of the genetic epidemiology of prostate cancer.In a genomic scan two chromosomal regions with evidence for linkage was observed. The strongest support was found on chromosome 19p with an allele sharing LOD score of 2.91 (genome-wide P = 0.032). The second region, showing suggestive evidence of linkage, was observed in the centromeric region of chromosome 5. Linkage analyses of densely spaced markers on chromosome 8p22-23 confirmed (P = 0.03) previously reported linkage to this region. A systematic evaluation of the possible impact that the RNASEL gene have on prostate cancer was performed. Overall, limited evidence for association with prostate cancer risk was found. The results provide strong evidence against a role of RNASEL in prostate cancer etiology in Sweden. In a comprehensive evaluation of occurrence of other malignancies in HPC families, previously reported association between gastric and prostate carcinoma was confirmed. The increased risk was of the same magnitude in early and late onset HPC families and confined to only male relatives. A genome-wide linkage analysis, stratified by occurrence of gastric carcinoma, identified a novel susceptibility locus on chromosome Xp21.In summary, chromosome 5q and 19p represents the regions most likely to harbor susceptibility genes predisposing to prostate cancer in the Swedish population. A common genetic basis for both gastric and prostate cancer has been confirmed and a novel susceptibility locus on chromosome Xp21 has been identified.