In this study, we review a variety of genetic polymorphisms that may have an etiologic role in prostate cancer. We include associations identified in molecular epidemiology studies and the consistency of findings reported to date. Suggestions for further research are also offered. For the purposes of this review, we identified relevant articles through a MEDLINE search for the period of January 1987 through March 2001. The searches were limited to articles published in English. Medical subject headings were used to scan titles, abstracts, and subject headings in the databases using the keywords "prostate neoplasms," "genetics," and "polymorphisms."