Background: Non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL) is a malignancy of lymphocytes, and may develop in the setting of inflammation and immune dysfunction. Small scale evaluations have suggested that common genetic variation in candidate genes related to immune function may predispose to the development of NHL. Here we report a comprehensive analysis of variants within genes associated with immunity and inflammation and risk of NHL.

Methods: We used ParAllele’s Immune and Inflammation panel of 9,412 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) from 1,450 immune/inflammation genes as a discovery tool in a clinic-based study of 458 NHL cases and 484 frequency matched controls seen at the Mayo Clinic from 2002–2005. The panel included 537 coding non-synonymous SNPs (nsSNPs), with the remainder of the SNPs selected as tags from HapMap (tagSNPs) to provide coverage of the candidate genes (r2 = 0.8 and minor allele frequency >0.05). To assess the association of individual SNPs with risk of NHL, we calculated Odds Ratios (ORs) and 95% confidence intervals, adjusted for age and gender. The most prevalent homozygous genotype was used as the reference group, and each polymorphism was modeled individually as having a log-additive effect in the regression model. Associations between haplotypes from each gene and the risk of NHL were calculated using a score test implemented in HAPLO.SCORE. We also modeled the main effects for all independent (r2 <0.25) SNPs from a gene in a multivariate logistic regression model.

Results: The mean age at diagnosis was 60 years for cases and 58% were male; in controls the mean age at enrollment was 61.6 years and 55% were male. In the gene analyses, the strongest findings (p≤0.001 from multiple SNP logistic regression or haplotype analysis) were for cAMP responsive element binding protein 1 (CREB1; p=0.0004), fibrinogen alpha chain (FGA; p=0.0006), TNF receptor-associated factor 1 (TRAF1; p=0.001), dual specificity phosphatase 2 (DUSP2; p=0.001), and fibrinogen gamma chain (FGG; p=0.001). In the nsSNP analyses, the strongest findings (p≤0.01) were for integrin β3 (ITGB3) L59P (OR=0.64, 0.50–0.83), Beta-1,3-N-acetylglucosaminyltransferase 3 (B3GNT3) H328R (OR=0.72, 0.57–0.91), transporter 2, ATP-binding cassette (TAP2) T665A (OR=1.32, 1.07–1.63), HLA-B associated transcript 2 (BAT2) V1895L (OR=0.60, 0.42–0.85), and complement component 7 (C7) T587P (OR=1.39, 1.07–1.80).

Conclusions. Our results suggest that genetic variability in genes associated with antigen processing (CREB1 and TAP2), lymphocyte trafficking (B3GNT3), immune activation (TRAF1, BAT2), complement and coagulation pathways (FGA, FGG, ITGB3, C7), and MAPK signaling (DUSP2) may be important in the etiology of NHL, and should be pursued in replication studies.

Disclosure: No relevant conflicts of interest to declare.

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