Genetic polymorphisms of CYP2A13 and its relationship to nasopharyngeal carcinoma in the Cantonese population

J Transl Med. 2004 Jun 29;2(1):24. doi: 10.1186/1479-5876-2-24.


Nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPC) is characterized by a high prevalence in Southern China, especially among Cantonese individuals of the Guangdong Province. Epidemiological studies have suggested that frequent exposure to high levels of nitrosamine from preserved foods such as salted fish could be a risk factor for NPC. Cytochrome P450 encompasses a family of enzymes that metabolize carcinogens and CYP2A13, a member of this family, is expressed predominantly in the respiratory tract with the highest levels in the nasal mucosa. In an effort to test whether a correlation exists between CYP2A13 genetic polymorphism and the risk of developing NPC, we sequenced all nine exons and the exon-intron junctions of the CYP2A13 gene in 45 NPC patients. We identified a total of 21 single nucleotide polymorphism (SNPs), including 7 novel SNPs. The most frequent functional variant allele was 74A-1757G-3375T-7233G with a haplotype frequency of 7.8% in the 45 NPC cases. In addition, a stop codon mutation was detected in one case. We then selected the 3 most frequent SNPs and one stop codon mutation to expand our study to a case-control analysis within the Cantonese population. A novel haplotype consisting 8 SNPs in introns, and four additional novel SNPs were identified; but no correlation between CYP2A13 genetic polymorphism and individual susceptibility to NPC was observed.