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Cancer Epidemiol. 2017 Oct;50(Pt A):39-45. doi: 10.1016/j.canep.2017.07.011. Epub 2017 Aug 7.

Genetic association of telomere length with hepatocellular carcinoma risk: A Mendelian randomization analysis.

Author information

1
Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, Jiangsu Key Lab of Cancer Biomarkers, Prevention and Treatment, Collaborative Innovation Center For Cancer Personalized Medicine, School of Public Health, Nanjing Medical University, Nanjing 211166, China.
2
Department of Infectious Diseases, Jiangsu Province Center for Disease Prevention and Control, Nanjing, China.
3
Eastern Hepatobiliary Surgery Hospital, Second Military Medical University, Shanghai, China.
4
Tumor Biobank, Nantong Tumor Hospital, Nantong, China.
5
Department of Hepatobiliary Oncology, State Key Laboratory of Oncology in South China, Sun Yat-Sen University Cancer Center, Guangzhou, China.
6
Department of Human Genetics, Genome Institute of Singapore, A*STAR, Singapore, Singapore.
7
Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, Jiangsu Key Lab of Cancer Biomarkers, Prevention and Treatment, Collaborative Innovation Center For Cancer Personalized Medicine, School of Public Health, Nanjing Medical University, Nanjing 211166, China. Electronic address: djc@njmu.edu.cn.
8
Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, Jiangsu Key Lab of Cancer Biomarkers, Prevention and Treatment, Collaborative Innovation Center For Cancer Personalized Medicine, School of Public Health, Nanjing Medical University, Nanjing 211166, China. Electronic address: zhibin_hu@njmu.edu.cn.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Observational studies show an association between telomere length and Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) risk, but the relationship is controversial. Particularly, it remains unclear whether the association is due to confounding or biases inherent in conventional epidemiological studies. Here, we applied Mendelian randomization approach to evaluate whether telomere length is causally associated with HCC risk.

METHODS:

Individual-level data were from HBV-related HCC Genome-wide association studies (1,538 HBV positive HCC patients and 1,465 HBV positive controls). Genetic risk score, as proxy for actual measured telomere length, derived from nine telomere length-associated genetic variants was used to evaluate the effect of telomere length on HCC risk.

RESULTS:

We observed a significant risk signal between genetically increased telomere length and HBV-related HCC risk (OR=2.09, 95% CI 1.32-3.31, P=0.002). Furthermore, a U-shaped curve was fitted by the restricted cubic spline curve, which indicated that either short or long telomere length would increase HCC risk (P=0.0022 for non-linearity test). Subgroup analysis did not reveal significant heterogeneity between different age, gender, smoking status and drinking status groups.

CONCLUSIONS:

Our results indicated that a genetic background that favors longer or shorter telomere length may increase HBV-related HCC risk-a U-shaped association.

KEYWORDS:

HBV-related hepatocellular carcinoma; Mendelian randomization analysis; Telomere length

PMID:
28797893
DOI:
10.1016/j.canep.2017.07.011
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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