Centrosome amplification has been detected in premalignant lesions and in situ tumors in the breast and in over 70% of invasive breast tumors, and has been associated with aneuploidy and tumor development. Based on these observations, the contribution of commonly inherited genetic variation in candidate genes related to centrosome structure and function to breast cancer risk was evaluated in an association study. Seven-hundred and 82 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) from 101 centrosomal genes were analyzed in 798 breast cancer cases and 843 controls from the Mayo Clinic Breast Cancer Study to assess the association between these SNPs (both individually and combined) and risk of breast cancer in this population. Eleven SNPs out of 782 from six genes displayed associations with breast cancer risk (P < 0.01). Haplotypes in five genes also displayed significant associations with risk. A two SNP combination of rs10145182 in NIN and rs2134808 in the TUBG1 locus (P-interaction = 0.00001), suggested SNPs in mediators of microtubule nucleation from the centrosome contribute to breast cancer. Evaluation of the simultaneous significance of all SNPs in the centrosome pathway suggested that the centrosome pathway is highly enriched (P = 4.76 × 10(-50)) for SNPs that are associated with breast cancer risk. Collections of weakly associated genetic variants in the centrosome pathway, rather than individual highly significantly associated SNPs, may account for a putative role for the centrosome pathway in predisposition to breast cancer.