International journal of clinical and experimental pathology

Notch1 single nucleotide polymorphism rs3124591 is associated with the risk of development of invasive ductal breast carcinoma in a Chinese population.

PMID 25120811


Accumulated evidence has revealed the presence of Notch receptor polymorphisms in non-tumorous diseases; however, few studies have investigated the association of Notch polymorphisms with breast cancer risk. A total of 100 invasive ductal carcinoma (IDC) and 50 ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS) patients and 100 usual ductal hyperplasia (UDH) controls were genotyped for the following Notch receptor single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) using matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization time-of-flight mass spectrometry: Notch1, rs3124591; Notch2, rs11249433; Notch3, rs3815188, and rs1043994; and Notch4, rs367398, and rs520692. Immunohistochemistry was used to determine the effect of Notch polymorphisms on corresponding Notch protein expression in successfully genotyped patients. The frequency of rs3124591 TC genotype was significantly higher in IDC (24.7%, 20/81) and DCIS (30%, 12/40) patients than in UDH controls (8%, 8/97) (P = 0.002 and P = 0.011, respectively). However, the distribution of other SNP genotypes was not significantly different between IDC and DCIS patients and UDH controls. The frequency of TC genotype was significantly higher in poorly differentiated tumors than in well-differentiated and moderately differentiated tumors (P = 0.022). Importantly, a positive correlation between the rs3124591 TC genotype and high Notch1 protein expression was observed in DCIS patients (P = 0.043) but not in IDC patients. This is the first study to suggest an increased risk of IDC and DCIS of the breast for the Notch1 rs3124591 variant. Furthermore, given the inconsistent associations between the rs3124591 variant and Notch1 expression in IDC and DCIS, this variant may affect breast cancer risk through mechanisms in the latter stage other than alterations in Notch1 protein expression.