IGF1 and risk for prostate cancer among African Americans


There have been suggestions that genetic variations in subtypes of insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF1) might be responsible for at least some of the increase in risk for prostate cancer among African Americans and others of historic African ethnicity such as Afro-Caribbeans. Unfortunately, a new paper by Georgi et al. in the journal Cancer Epidemiology Biomarkers and Prevention appears to have put paid to this hypothesis.

The paper by Georgi et al. is scientifically complex, and we do not intend to try to get into the details. However, the bottom line is that:

  • The authors were able to identify > 330 different IGF1-specific single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs).
  • They identified 8 new IGF1 SNPs.
  • They examined the association of these SNPs in 1,000 African Americans with prostate cancer and in 991 control cases.
  • They examined the association of the the most common of the SNPs in another 3,465 prostate cancer cases and 3,325 non-African-American controls.
  • They were unable to demonstrate any clear association between
    • The presence of any specific IGF1 SNP and risk for prostate cancer among African Americans
    • The cumulative impact of all 334 IGF1 SNPs and risk for prostate cancer in African Americans

The conclude very simply than their findings “do not support the role of IGF1 variants and prostate cancer risk among African Americans.”

2 Responses

  1. “appears to have put paid to this hypothesis.” Auto correct get you?

  2. No. That’s exactly what I wrote and intended.

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