Prostate Cancer Susceptibility Loci Identified on Chromosome 12 in African Americans

Carolina Bonilla, Stanley Hooker, Tshela Mason, Cathryn H. Bock, Rick A. Kittles

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

29 Citations (Scopus)


Prostate cancer (PCa) is a complex disease that disproportionately affects African Americans and other individuals of African descent. A number of regions across the genome have been associated to PCa, most of them with moderate effects. A few studies have reported chromosomal changes on 12p and 12q that occur during the onset and development of PCa but to date no consistent association of the disease with chromosome 12 polymorphic variation has been identified. In order to unravel genetic risk factors that underlie PCa health disparities we investigated chromosome 12 using ancestry informative markers (AIMs), which allow us to distinguish genomic regions of European or West African origin, and tested them for association with PCa. Additional SNPs were genotyped in those areas where significant signals of association were detected. The strongest signal was discovered at the SNP rs12827748, located upstream of the PAWR gene, a tumor suppressor, which is amply expressed in the prostate. The most frequent allele in Europeans was the risk allele among African Americans. We also examined vitamin D related genes, VDR and CYP27B1, and found a significant association of PCa with the TaqI polymorphism (rs731236) in the former. Although our results warrant further investigation we have uncovered a genetic susceptibility factor for PCa in a likely candidate by means of an approach that takes advantage of the differential contribution of parental groups to an admixed population.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere16044
Pages (from-to)-
Number of pages6
JournalPLoS ONE
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 16 Feb 2011


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