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Cancer Res. 2008 Dec 15;68(24):10171-7. doi: 10.1158/0008-5472.CAN-08-1827.

Interaction between single nucleotide polymorphisms in selenoprotein P and mitochondrial superoxide dismutase determines prostate cancer risk.

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Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences, University of Surrey, Guildford, United Kingdom.


Selenium may affect prostate cancer risk via its plasma carrier selenoprotein P which shows dramatically reduced expression in prostate cancer tumors and cell lines. The selenoprotein P (SEPP1) Ala234 single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) allele is associated with lower plasma selenoprotein P in men, reducing the concentration/activity of other antioxidant selenoproteins. Selenium status also modifies the effect of the mitochondrial superoxide dismutase (SOD2) SNP Ala16Val on prostate cancer risk. We investigated the relationship of these SNPs with prostate cancer risk. DNA from 2,975 cases and 1,896 age-matched controls from the population-based Prostate Cancer in Sweden study were genotyped using TaqMan assays. Cases were designated aggressive or nonaggressive prostate cancers at diagnosis by clinical criteria. Association with prostate cancer was investigated by logistic regression; gene-gene interaction using a general linear model. The mean plasma selenium concentration measured in 169 controls was relatively low (76.0 +/- 17.2 microg/L). SNP genotype distributions were in Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium. SOD2-Ala16+ men were at a greater risk of prostate cancer [odds ratios (OR), 1.19; 95% confidence intervals (CI), 1.03-1.37] compared with SOD2-Val16 homozygotes. Men homozygous for SEPP1-Ala234 who were also SOD2-Ala16+ had a higher risk of prostate cancer (OR, 1.43; 95% CI, 1.17-1.76) and aggressive prostate cancer (OR, 1.60; 95% CI, 1.22-2.09) than those who were SOD2-Val16 homozygotes (interaction, prostate cancer P = 0.05; aggressive prostate cancer P = 0.01). This interaction was stronger in ever-smokers: SOD2-Ala16+ men homozygous for SEPP1-Ala234 had an almost doubled risk of prostate cancer (OR, 1.97; 95% CI, 1.33-2.91; interaction P = 0.001). In a low-selenium population, SOD2-Ala16+ men homozygous for SEPP1-Ala234 are at an increased risk of prostate cancer/aggressive prostate cancer especially if ever-smokers, because they are likely to produce more mitochondrial H(2)O(2) that they cannot remove, thereby promoting prostate tumor cell proliferation and migration.

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