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Cancer Res. 1999 Aug 15;59(16):3908-10.

Cytochrome P450c17alpha gene (CYP17) polymorphism predicts use of hormone replacement therapy.

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  • 1Department of Preventive Medicine, University of Southern California School of Medicine, University of Southern California/Norris Comprehensive Cancer Center, Los Angeles 90033-0800, USA.


We investigated whether a polymorphism in the cytochrome P450c17alpha gene (CYP17), which is associated with higher endogenous hormone levels, influences the use of hormone replacement therapy (HRT). The study included 749 postmenopausal women ages 44-75 years at baseline randomly selected from a larger multiethnic cohort. African-American, Japanese, Latina, and white women were included in the study. Women who carry the CYP17 A2/A2 genotype were about half as likely as women with the A1/A1 genotype to be current HRT users (odds ratio = 0.52; 95% confidence interval, 0.31-0.86). This association was present in all four racial/ethnic groups and for women above and below the median weight of 150 pounds. These findings suggest that the actual risk of breast cancer associated with HRT use may be higher than previously reported.

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