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J Natl Cancer Inst. 2003 Feb 19;95(4):308-15.

Repair of UV light-induced DNA damage and risk of cutaneous malignant melanoma.

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  • 1Department of Epidemiology, Unit 189, The University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center, 1515 Holcombe Boulevard, Houston, TX 77030, USA. qwei@mdanderson.org

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

The mechanism underlying the role of UV light exposure from sunlight in the etiology of cutaneous malignant melanoma (CMM) is unclear. Patients with xeroderma pigmentosum, a disease characterized by severe sensitivity to UV radiation and a defect in nucleotide excision repair, have a high incidence of CMM, which suggests that DNA repair capacity (DRC) plays a role in sunlight-induced CMM in the general population as well.

METHODS:

We conducted a hospital-based case-control study of DRC and CMM among 312 non-Hispanic white CMM patients who had no prior chemotherapy or radiation therapy, and 324 cancer-free control subjects who were frequency-matched to case patients on age, sex, and ethnicity. Information on demographic variables, risk factors, and tumor characteristics was obtained from questionnaires and medical records. We used the host-cell reactivation assay to measure the DRC in study subjects' lymphocytes. All statistical tests were two sided.

RESULTS:

Case patients had a 19% lower mean (+/- standard deviation [SD]) DRC (8.5 +/- 3.4%) than control subjects (10.5 +/- 5.1%), a statistically significant difference (P<.001). DRC that was at or below the median value (i.e., 9.4%) in control subjects was associated with increased risk for CMM after adjustment for age, sex, and other covariates (odds ratio [OR] = 2.02, 95% confidence interval [CI] = 1.45 to 2.82). We observed a dose-response relationship between decreased DRC and increased risk of CMM (P(trend)<.001). Patients with tumors on sun-exposed skin had statistically significantly lower DRC than patients with tumors on unexposed skin (8.2 +/- 3.3% versus 9.5 +/- 3.5%; P =.004).

CONCLUSIONS:

Reduced DRC is an independent risk factor for CMM and may contribute to susceptibility to sunlight-induced CMM among the general population.

PMID:
12591987
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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