Departure from multiplicative interaction for catechol-O-methyltransferase genotype and active/passive exposure to tobacco smoke among women with breast cancer
Bradbury, Brian D.
Wilk, Jemma B.
Lash, Timothy L.
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CitationBradbury, Brian D, Jemma B Wilk, Ann Aschengrau, Timothy L Lash. "Departure from multiplicative interaction for catechol-O-methyltransferase genotype and active/passive exposure to tobacco smoke among women with breast cancer" Journal of Carcinogenesis 5:3. (2006)
BACKGROUND Women with homozygous polymorphic alleles of catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT-LL) metabolize 2-hydroxylated estradiol, a suspected anticarcinogenic metabolite of estrogen, at a four-fold lower rate than women with no polymorphic alleles (COMT-HH) or heterozygous women (COMT-HL). We hypothesized that COMT-LL women exposed actively or passively to tobacco smoke would have higher exposure to 2-hydroxylated estradiol than never-active/never passive exposed women, and should therefore have a lower risk of breast cancer than women exposed to tobacco smoke or with higher COMT activity. METHODS We used a case-only design to evaluate departure from multiplicative interaction between COMT genotype and smoking status. We identified 502 cases of invasive incident breast cancer and characterized COMT genotype. Information on tobacco use and other potential breast cancer risk factors were obtained by structured interviews. RESULTS We observed moderate departure from multiplicative interaction for COMT-HL genotype and history of ever-active smoking (adjusted odds ratio [aOR] = 1.6, 95% confidence interval [CI]: 0.7, 3.8) and more pronounced departure for women who smoked 40 or more years (aOR = 2.3, 95% CI: 0.8, 7.0). We observed considerable departure from multiplicative interaction for COMT-HL genotype and history of ever-passive smoking (aOR = 2.0, 95% CI: 0.8, 5.2) or for having lived with a smoker after age 20 (aOR = 2.8, 95% CI: 0.8, 10). CONCLUSION With greater control over potential misclassification errors and a large case-only population, we found evidence to support an interaction between COMT genotype and tobacco smoke exposure in breast cancer etiology.