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Int J Clin Exp Med. 2012;5(1):72-9. Epub 2012 Jan 15.

GC Glu416Asp and Thr420Lys polymorphisms contribute to gastrointestinal cancer susceptibility in a Chinese population.


Vitamin D has potent anticancer properties, especially against gastrointestinal cancers. Group-specific component (GC), a key member of vitamin D pathway proteins, could bind to and transport vitamin D to target organs. As a polymorphic protein, two common coding single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNP) [Glu416Asp (rs7041) and Thr420Lys (rs4588)] were identified in its gene. These SNPs have been associated to circulating vitamin D levels and several cancer risks in different populations. However, there is no report on their role in gastrointestinal cancer development among Chinese to date. Therefore, we examined the association between these variants and risk of gastrointestinal cancers in a case-control cohort including 964 patients with four gastrointestinal cancers (hepatocellular carcinoma, esophageal cancer, gastric cancer and colorectal cancer) and 1187 controls. Odds ratios and 95% confidence intervals were estimated by logistic regression. We found that GC Thr420Lys polymorphism has significant impact on the risk of developing gastrointestinal cancers, especially colorectal cancer. Additionally, subjects who carrying GC Asp(416)-Lys(420) haplotype, which contains the at-risk 420Lys allele, also showed significantly increased risk to develop gastrointestinal cancers. In conclusion, our study demonstrated that common genetic variants and haplo-types in GC may influence individual susceptibility to gastrointestinal cancers in Chinese population.


Group-specific component; gastrointestinal cancer; single nucleotide polymorphism; susceptibility


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