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Int J Environ Health Res. 2014;24(3):256-68. doi: 10.1080/09603123.2013.809703. Epub 2013 Jul 22.

Adipose tissue PCB levels and CYP1B1 and COMT genotypes in relation to breast cancer risk in postmenopausal Danish women.

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  • 1a Danish Building Research Institute, Construction and Health, Aalborg University , Copenhagen , Denmark .


Exposure to PCBs may be an etiologic factor for breast cancer. The cytochrome P450 1B1 (CYP1B1) and catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) enzymes are involved in estrogen metabolism and PCB metabolism, both of which may relate to breast cancer susceptibility. Polymorphisms in genes regulating these enzymes control efficiency. Our objective was to assess whether CYP1B1 and COMT gene polymorphisms modulate the effect of PCBs in breast cancer risk, among postmenopausal Danish women. Neither CYP1B1 Leu432Val polymorphisms nor adipose tissue PCBs were independently associated with breast cancer risk. When assessing the independent effect of the COMT Val158Met polymorphism, we observed reduced risk for breast cancer amongst hormone replacement therapy using women who were homozygous carriers of the variant allele compared with those carrying the wild-type variant (RR = 0.41; 95% CI: 0.29-0.89). We found no statistically significant interactions between any of the PCB groups and CYP1B1 or COMT polymorphisms on the risk of breast cancer.

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