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Cancer Res. 2006 Aug 15;66(16):8287-92.

Joint effects of germ-line p53 mutation and sex on cancer risk in Li-Fraumeni syndrome.

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Department of Epidemiology, The University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, TX 77030, USA.


Germ-line p53 mutations have been identified in most families with Li-Fraumeni syndrome (LFS). For germ-line p53 mutation carriers, there is considerable variability with respect to age of cancer onset and tumor type, suggesting that additional genetic effects influence the clinical severity and tumor spectrum. To identify factors that might contribute to the observed heterogeneity in time to onset, we used segregation analysis to analyze the joint effects of germ-line p53 mutations and risk modifier(s) on cancer incidence. We studied 159 kindreds, ascertained through probands who had been diagnosed with childhood soft-tissue sarcoma before 16 years of age, survived >3 years after diagnosis, and treated at The University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center (Houston, TX) from 1944 to 1975. This unique cohort has been followed systematically for >20 years and has had germ-line p53 mutation testing in probands and extended family members. The analyses revealed that germ-line p53 mutations and sex had significant effects on cancer risk: men with p53 mutations had 151-fold higher odds of developing cancer than did those without mutations [95% confidence interval (95% CI), 60-380], and women with p53 mutations had 1,075-fold higher odds than did those without mutations (95% CI, 358-3,229) and 7.1-fold higher odds of having cancer than did men with mutations (95% CI, 2.5-20.3). These findings provide quantitative cancer risk assessments for LFS families.

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