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Front Genet. 2018 Feb 16;8:236. doi: 10.3389/fgene.2017.00236. eCollection 2017.

Correlations between Risk Factors for Breast Cancer and Genetic Instability in Cancer Patients-A Clinical Perspective Study.

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Postgraduate Program in Pharmaceutical Sciences, Federal University of Piauí, Teresina, Brazil.
Biomedicine Department, UNINOVAFAPI University, Teresina, Brazil.
Department of Pharmacy, Southern University Bangladesh, Chittagong, Bangladesh.
School of Medicine, Flinders University, Adelaide, SA, Australia.
Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences, North South University, Dhaka, Bangladesh.
Pharmacy Discipline, Life Science School, Khulna University, Khulna, Bangladesh.
University Hospital, Federal University of Piauí, Teresina, Brazil.
Department of Biological Sciences, Federal University of Piauí, Picos, Brazil.
Department of Biophysics and Physiology, Universidade Federal do Piauí, Teresina, Brazil.
Cancer Biology Laboratory, School of Biological Sciences (Zoology), Dr. Harisingh Gour Central University, Sagar, India.
Program in Cellular and Molecular Biology Applied to Health Sciences, Universidade Luterana do Brasil, Canoas, Brazil.


Molecular epidemiological studies have identified several risk factors linking to the genes and external factors in the pathogenesis of breast cancer. In this sense, genetic instability caused by DNA damage and DNA repair inefficiencies are important molecular events for the diagnosis and prognosis of therapies. Therefore, the objective of this study was to analyze correlation between sociocultural, occupational, and lifestyle risk factors with levels of genetic instability in non-neoplastic cells of breast cancer patients. Total 150 individuals were included in the study that included 50 breast cancer patients submitted to chemotherapy (QT), 50 breast cancer patients submitted to radiotherapy (RT), and 50 healthy women without any cancer. Cytogenetic biomarkers for apoptosis and DNA damage were evaluated in samples of buccal epithelial and peripheral blood cells through micronuclei and comet assay tests. Elder age patients (61-80 years) had higher levels of apoptosis (catriolysis by karyolysis) and DNA damage at the diagnosis (baseline damage) with increased cell damage during QT and especially during RT. We also reported the increased frequencies of cytogenetic biomarkers in patients who were exposed to ionizing radiation as well as for alcoholism and smoking. QT and RT induced high levels of fragmentation (karyorrhexis) and nuclear dissolution (karyolysis) and DNA damage. Correlations were observed between age and karyorrhexis at diagnosis; smoking and karyolysis during RT; and radiation and karyolysis during QT. These correlations indicate that risk factors may also influence the genetic instability in non-neoplastic cells caused to the patients during cancer therapies.


apoptosis; breast cancer; chemotherapy; genetic instability; risk factors; toxicogenomics

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