Genetic variation in XRCC1, sun exposure, and risk of skin cancer

J. Han, S. E. Hankinson, G. A. Colditz, D. J. Hunter

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

60 Scopus citations


The XRCC1 gene is involved in the base excision repair pathway. We assessed the associations of polymorphisms and haplotypes in XRCC1 with skin cancer risk in a nested case-control study within the Nurses' Health Study (219 melanoma, 286 squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) and 300 basal cell carcinoma (BCC), and 873 controls). We genotyped four haplotype-tagging single-nucleotide polymorphisms (Arg194Trp, C26602T, Arg399Gln, and Gln632Gln). There was no significant difference in frequency distribution between cases and controls for any of the five inferred common haplotypes. We observed that the 399Gln allele was inversely associated with SCC risk. This inverse association was only seen among those who had five or more lifetime sunburns, those with a family history of skin cancer, and those in the highest tertile of cumulative sun exposure in a bathing suit, but not among those with low risk defined by these risk factors. We also observed a significant association of the carriage of 194Trp allele with increased SCC risk, which was modified by family history of skin cancer. These two polymorphisms were not associated with BCC or melanoma risk. Our data suggest that the Arg 194Trp and Arg399Gln polymorphisms may be differently associated with skin cancer risk according to exposure dose and skin cancer type.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1604-1609
Number of pages6
JournalBritish Journal of Cancer
Issue number8
StatePublished - Oct 18 2004


  • Skin cancer
  • Sunlight
  • XRCC1

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research

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