“Genome-Wide Association Study (GWAS): Exploring the Correlations Between Parkinson’s Disease and Cancer Risk”

2023-05-08 21:17:18

Why is this important?

Epidemiological studies describe a lower risk of cancer in patients with PD than in others, particularly due to the fact that the prevalence of smoking is lower in the former. However, associations seem to exist for cancers unrelated to smoking, with also different trends depending on the smoking status of patients. The most conclusive data concern the risk of melanoma, in MPs as well as in the parents of these patients. However, difficulties in clearly identifying the links between PD and cancer risk are often linked to methodological difficulties and confounding factors.

This study has the advantage of having examined the correlations between PD and cancer via a genome-wide association study (GWAS) and then via the calculation of polygenic risk scores (PRS).


The researchers used individual data from subjects included in two consortia: Courage-PD and iPDGC. They used registers with at least 50 registered patients or control cases (people of European origin), ie a total of 35 case-control studies, 8,919 cases and 7,600 controls. The second iPDGC consortium (33,674 cases, 449,056 controls) BCAC (Breast Cancer Association Consortium), Prostate Cancer Association Group to Investigate Cancer Associated Alterations in the Genome, International Lung Cancer Consortium et Ovarian Cancer Association Consortium (numbers between 36,017 and 228,951 subjects). The researchers calculated the genetic correlation between PD and cancers using the linkage disequilibrium score, which identifies privileged associations of alleles whose frequency is higher than expected randomly.

Principle results

Meta-analysis of genetic correlations showed a positive correlation between SNPs related to PD and those related to melanoma, as well as between PD and prostate cancer. A genetic correlation was identified between PD and breast cancer in both datasets, but it was not statistically significant. Finally, for the three other cancers (thyroid, lung and ovary), the data were heterogeneous.

A positive association was identified between breast cancer-related SRP and PD (OR 1.08 [1,06-1,10]), and an inverse association between that linked to ovarian cancer and PD (odds ratio 0.89 [0,84-0,94]).

PD and ovarian cancer SRPs share a common region at locus 17q21.31 that has also been associated with breast cancer. It is found in SNPs that are associated with a high linkage disequilibrium score (and therefore a probably non-random association).

#Genes #link #Parkinsons #disease #cancer

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