Genetic epidemiology of glioblastoma multiforme: Confirmatory and new findings from analyses of human leukocyte antigen alleles and motifs

Academic Article

Abstract

  • Background: Human leukocyte antigen (HLA) class I genes mediate cytotoxic T-lymphocyte responses and natural killer cell function. In a previous study, several HLA-B and HLA-C alleles and haplotypes were positively or negatively associated with the occurrence and prognosis of glioblastoma multiforme (GBM). Methodology/Principal Findings: As an extension of the Upper Midwest Health Study, we have performed HLA genotyping for 149 GBM patients and 149 healthy control subjects from a non-metropolitan population consisting almost exclusively of European Americans. Conditional logistic regression models did not reproduce the association of HLA-B*07 or the B*07-Cw*07 haplotype with GBM. Nonetheless, HLA-A*32, which has previously been shown to predispose GBM patients to a favorable prognosis, was negatively associated with occurrence of GBM (odds ratio = 0.41, p = 0.04 by univariate analysis). Other alleles (A*29, A*30, A*31 and A*33) within the A19 serology group to which A*32 belongs showed inconsistent trends. Sequencing-based HLA-A genotyping established that A*3201 was the single A*32 allele underlying the observed association. Additional evaluation of HLA-A promoter and exon 1 sequences did not detect any unexpected single nucleotide polymorphisms that could suggest differential allelic expression. Further analyses restricted to female GBM cases and controls revealed a second association with a specific HLA-B sequence motif corresponding to Bw4-80Ile (odds ratio = 2.71, p = 0.02). Conclusions/Significance: HLA-A allelic product encoded by A*3201 is likely to be functionally important to GBM. The novel, sex-specific association will require further confirmation in other representative study populations.
  • Published In

  • PLoS ONE  Journal
  • Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Song W; Ruder AM; Hu L; Li Y; Ni R; Shao W; Kaslow RA; Butler MA; Tang J
  • Volume

  • 4
  • Issue

  • 9