Journal Article

Polymorphic CAG repeats in the androgen receptor gene, prostate-specific antigen polymorphism and prostate cancer risk

Andrea Gsur, Martin Preyer, Gerald Haidinger, Thomas Zidek, Stephan Madersbacher, Georg Schatzl, Michael Marberger, Christian Vutuc and Michael Micksche

in Carcinogenesis

Volume 23, issue 10, pages 1647-1651
Published in print October 2002 | ISSN: 0143-3334
Published online October 2002 | e-ISSN: 1460-2180 | DOI:
Polymorphic CAG repeats in the androgen receptor gene, prostate-specific antigen polymorphism and prostate cancer risk

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As the development of prostate cancer is androgen-dependent, it has been hypothesized that variation in transcriptional activity by the androgen receptor (AR) related to polymorphic CAG repeats in exon 1, influences prostate cancer risk. The AR regulates gene transcription by binding to androgen-response elements (AREs) in target genes, such as the prostate-specific antigen (PSA). In the ARE-I sequence of the PSA gene an adenine to guanine polymorphism is described. It has been hypothesized that the AR binds the two PSA alleles (A and G) with differing affinities and may, thereby, differentially influence prostate cancer risk. To examine the role of the polymorphisms in the AR and PSA genes in prostate cancer susceptibility, we conducted a case-control study of Austrian Caucasians with 190 newly diagnosed prostate cancer patients and 190 age-matched control men with benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH). The polymorphisms were determined by polymerase chain reaction (PCR)-based methods using DNA from peripheral white blood cells. Logistic regressions were performed to calculate odds ratios (OR) and confidence limits (CL) and to control for possible confounders. Our data provide no evidence for an association between prostate cancer and CAG repeat length. However, we found a significant influence of the ARE-I PSA polymorphism on prostate cancer risk, when calculating the combination of the A/G and G/G genotypes relative to subjects with the A/A genotype (OR = 0.63; 95% CL 0.39–0.99; P = 0.048), suggesting that the G allele has a protective effect. In a case analysis according to Gleason score, the PSA G/G genotype was significantly more frequent in patients with Gleason score >7 (35.1%) than in patients with Gleason score <7 (21.5%), providing evidence that the PSA G/G genotype is associated with more advanced disease at time of diagnosis. However, the ambivalent role of the PSA during prostate carcinogenesis needs further investigation.

Keywords: AR, androgen receptor; ARE, androgen response element; BPH, benign prostatic hyperplasia; CL, confidence limit; IQR, interquartile range; OR, odds ratio; PSA, prostate-specific antigen.

Journal Article.  4597 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Clinical Cytogenetics and Molecular Genetics

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