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Open Access Research article

Polymorphisms of the XRCC1, XRCC3, & XPD genes, and colorectal cancer risk: a case-control study in Taiwan

Chih-Ching Yeh12, Fung-Chang Sung12, Reiping Tang3, Chung Rong Chang-Chieh3 and Ling-Ling Hsieh4*

Author Affiliations

1 Institute of Environmental Health, National Taiwan University College of Public Health, Taipei 100, Taiwan

2 Institute of Environmental Health and Department of Risk Management, China Medical University College of Public Health, Taichung 404, Taiwan

3 Colorectal Section, Chang Gung Memorial Hospital, Linkou, Taiwan

4 Department of Public Health, Chang Gung University, Tao-Yuan 333, Taiwan

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BMC Cancer 2005, 5:12  doi:10.1186/1471-2407-5-12

Published: 28 January 2005

Abstract

Background

Recent studies relating to the association between DNA repair-gene polymorphisms and colorectal cancer risk would, to the best of our knowledge, appear to be very limited. This study was designed to examine the polymorphisms associated with three DNA repair genes, namely: XRCC1 Arg399Gln, XRCC3 Thr241Met and XPD Lys751Gln, and investigate their role as susceptibility markers for colorectal cancer.

Methods

We conducted a case-control study including 727 cases of cancer and 736 hospital-based age- and sex-matched healthy controls to examine the role of genetic polymorphisms of three DNA-repair genes (XRCC1, XRCC3 and XPD) in the context of colorectal cancer risk for the Taiwanese population. Genomic DNA isolated from 10 ml whole blood was used to genotype XRCC1 Arg399Gln, XRCC3 Thr241Met and XPD Lys751Gln by means of polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and restriction fragment length polymorphism (RFLP) analysis.

Results

The risk for colorectal cancer did not appear to differ significantly amongst individuals featuring the XRCC1 399Arg/Arg genotype (OR = 1.18; 95% CI, 0.96–1.45), the XRCC3 241Thr/Thr genotype (OR = 1.25; 95% CI, 0.88–1.79) or the XPD 751Gln allele (OR = 1.20; 95% CI, 0.90–1.61), although individuals featuring a greater number of risk genotypes (genotype with OR greater than 1) did experience a higher risk for colorectal cancer when compared to those who didn't feature any risk genotypes (Trend test P = 0.03). Compared with those individuals who didn't express any putative risk genotypes, individuals featuring all of the putative risk genotypes did experience a significantly greater cancer risk (OR = 2.43, 95% CI = 1.21–4.90), particularly for individuals suffering tumors located in the rectum (OR = 3.18, 95% CI = 1.29–7.82) and diagnosed prior to the age of 60 years (OR = 4.90, 95% CI = 1.72–14.0).

Conclusions

Our results suggest that DNA-repair pathways may simultaneously modulate the risk of colorectal cancer for the Taiwanese population, and, particularly for rectal cancer and younger patients.