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Mutat Res. 2011 Jan 10;706(1-2):7-12. doi: 10.1016/j.mrfmmm.2010.10.004. Epub 2010 Oct 28.

Precancerous and non-cancer disease endpoints of chronic arsenic exposure: the level of chromosomal damage and XRCC3 T241M polymorphism.

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Molecular and Human Genetics Division, Indian Institute of Chemical Biology, Kolkata 700 032, India.


Genetic variants are expected to play an important role in arsenic susceptibility. Our previous study revealed deficient DNA repair capacity to be a susceptibility factor for arsenicism. T241M polymorphism in XRCC3 (a homologous recombination repair pathway gene) is widely studied for its association with several cancers. We have investigated the association of XRCC3 T241M polymorphism with arsenic-induced precancerous and non-cancer disease outcomes. The present study evaluated the association of T241M polymorphism with arsenic-induced skin lesions, peripheral neuropathy (neurodegenerative changes), conjunctivitis and other ocular diseases. A case-control study was conducted in West Bengal, India, involving 206 cases with arsenic-induced skin lesions and 215 controls without arsenic-induced skin lesions having similar arsenic exposure. XRCC3 T241M polymorphism was determined using conventional PCR-sequencing method. Chromosomal aberration assay, arsenic-induced neuropathy and ocular diseases were also evaluated. The data revealed that presence of at least one Met allele (Met/Met or Thr/Met) was protective towards development of arsenic-induced skin lesions [OR=0.45, 95% CI: 0.30-0.67], peripheral neuropathy [OR=0.49; 95%CI: 0.30-0.82] and conjunctivitis [OR=0.60; 95%CI: 0.40-0.92]. A significant correlation was also observed between protective genotype and decreased frequency of chromosomal aberrations. Thus the results indicate the protective role of Met allele against the arsenic-induced skin lesions, chromosomal instability, peripheral neuropathy and conjunctivitis.

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