Background: The association with histocompatibility antigens (HLA), in particular Class II genes (DQB1, DRB1), has recently been suggested to be one of the genetic factors involved in testicular germ cell tumor (TGCT) development. The current study, which uses genotyping of microsatellite markers, was designed to replicate previous associations.
Methods: In 151 patients, along with controls comprising parents or spouses, the HLA region (particularly Class II) on chromosome 6p21 was genotyped for a set of 15 closely linked microsatellite markers.
Results: In both patients and controls, strong linkage disequilibrium was observed in the genotyped region, indicating that similar haplotypes are likely to be identical by descent. However, association analysis and the transmission disequilibrium test did not show significant results. Haplotype sharing statistics, a haplotype method that derives extra information from phase and single marker tests, did not show differences in haplotype sharing between patients and controls.
Conclusion: The current genotyping study did not confirm the previously reported association between HLA Class II genes and TGCT. As the HLA alleles for which associations were reported are also prevalent in the Dutch populations, these associations are likely to be nonexistent or much weaker than previously reported.
Copyright 2002 American Cancer Society.