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J Am Dent Assoc. 2008 Feb;139(2):163-9.

Hypodontia as a risk marker for epithelial ovarian cancer: a case-controlled study.

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Division of Orthodontics, University of Kentucky, Lexington, KY 40515, USA.



Genetic mutations that result in hypodontia also may be associated with abnormalities in other parts of the body. The authors conducted a study to establish the prevalence rates of hypodontia among subjects with epithelial ovarian cancer (EOC) and control subjects to explore possible genetic associations between these two phenotypes.


The authors recruited 50 subjects with EOC and 100 control subjects who did not have EOC. The authors performed a dental examination on each subject to detect hypodontia, and they reviewed pertinent radiographs and dental histories. They also recorded any family history of cancer and hypodontia.


The prevalence of hypodontia was 20 percent for EOC subjects and 3 percent for control subjects. The difference between these two hypodontia rates was significant. This difference implied that women with EOC are 8.1 times more likely to have hypodontia than are women without EOC. The severity of hypodontia was similar between the two groups, with one to two teeth being affected. Maxillary lateral incisors followed by second premolars were the most frequently affected teeth.


The preliminary data suggest a statistical association between hypodontia of the permanent dentition and EOC.


Genetic analysis of the genes of interest is necessary to explore similarities between hypodontia and EOC further. An association could allow hypodontia to serve as a potential risk marker for EOC.

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