• Agnostic Pathway/Gene Set Analysis of Genome-Wide Association Data Identifies Associations for Pancreatic Cancer.

      Walsh, Naomi; Zhang, Han; Hyland, Paula L; Yang, Qi; Mocci, Evelina; Zhang, Mingfeng; Childs, Erica J; Collins, Irene; Wang, Zhaoming; Arslan, Alan A; et al. (2018-12-12)
      Genome-wide association studies (GWAS) identify associations of individual single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) with cancer risk but usually only explain a fraction of the inherited variability. Pathway analysis of genetic variants is a powerful tool to identify networks of susceptibility genes. We conducted a large agnostic pathway-based meta-analysis of GWAS data using the summary-based adaptive rank truncated product method to identify gene sets and pathways associated with pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC) in 9040 cases and 12 496 controls. We performed expression quantitative trait loci (eQTL) analysis and functional annotation of the top SNPs in genes contributing to the top associated pathways and gene sets. All statistical tests were two-sided. We identified 14 pathways and gene sets associated with PDAC at a false discovery rate of less than 0.05. After Bonferroni correction (P ≤ 1.3 × 10-5), the strongest associations were detected in five pathways and gene sets, including maturity-onset diabetes of the young, regulation of beta-cell development, role of epidermal growth factor (EGF) receptor transactivation by G protein-coupled receptors in cardiac hypertrophy pathways, and the Nikolsky breast cancer chr17q11-q21 amplicon and Pujana ATM Pearson correlation coefficient (PCC) network gene sets. We identified and validated rs876493 and three correlating SNPs (PGAP3) and rs3124737 (CASP7) from the Pujana ATM PCC gene set as eQTLs in two normal derived pancreas tissue datasets. Our agnostic pathway and gene set analysis integrated with functional annotation and eQTL analysis provides insight into genes and pathways that may be biologically relevant for risk of PDAC, including those not previously identified.
    • Circulating bilirubin levels and risk of colorectal cancer: serological and Mendelian randomization analyses.

      Seyed Khoei, Nazlisadat; Jenab, Mazda; Murphy, Neil; Banbury, Barbara L; Carreras-Torres, Robert; Viallon, Vivian; Kühn, Tilman; Bueno-de-Mesquita, Bas; Aleksandrova, Krasimira; Cross, Amanda J; et al. (2020-09-03)
      In a case-control study nested in the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition (EPIC), pre-diagnostic unconjugated bilirubin (UCB, the main component of total bilirubin) concentrations were measured by high-performance liquid chromatography in plasma samples of 1386 CRC cases and their individually matched controls. Additionally, 115 single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) robustly associated (P < 5 × 10-8) with circulating total bilirubin were instrumented in a 2-sample MR to test for a potential causal effect of bilirubin on CRC risk in 52,775 CRC cases and 45,940 matched controls in the Genetics and Epidemiology of Colorectal Cancer Consortium (GECCO), the Colon Cancer Family Registry (CCFR), and the Colorectal Transdisciplinary (CORECT) study.
    • Genome-wide meta-analysis identifies five new susceptibility loci for pancreatic cancer.

      Klein, Alison P; Wolpin, Brian M; Risch, Harvey A; Stolzenberg-Solomon, Rachael Z; Mocci, Evelina; Zhang, Mingfeng; Canzian, Federico; Childs, Erica J; Hoskins, Jason W; Jermusyk, Ashley; et al. (2018-02-08)
      In 2020, 146,063 deaths due to pancreatic cancer are estimated to occur in Europe and the United States combined. To identify common susceptibility alleles, we performed the largest pancreatic cancer GWAS to date, including 9040 patients and 12,496 controls of European ancestry from the Pancreatic Cancer Cohort Consortium (PanScan) and the Pancreatic Cancer Case-Control Consortium (PanC4). Here, we find significant evidence of a novel association at rs78417682 (7p12/TNS3, P = 4.35 × 10-8). Replication of 10 promising signals in up to 2737 patients and 4752 controls from the PANcreatic Disease ReseArch (PANDoRA) consortium yields new genome-wide significant loci: rs13303010 at 1p36.33 (NOC2L, P = 8.36 × 10-14), rs2941471 at 8q21.11 (HNF4G, P = 6.60 × 10-10), rs4795218 at 17q12 (HNF1B, P = 1.32 × 10-8), and rs1517037 at 18q21.32 (GRP, P = 3.28 × 10-8). rs78417682 is not statistically significantly associated with pancreatic cancer in PANDoRA. Expression quantitative trait locus analysis in three independent pancreatic data sets provides molecular support of NOC2L as a pancreatic cancer susceptibility gene.