Putative Prostate Cancer Risk SNP in an Androgen Receptor-Binding Site of the Melanophilin Gene Illustrates Enrichment of Risk SNPs in Androgen Receptor Target Sites

Hum Mutat. 2016 Jan;37(1):52-64. doi: 10.1002/humu.22909. Epub 2015 Oct 19.


Genome-wide association studies have identified genomic loci, whose single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) predispose to prostate cancer (PCa). However, the mechanisms of most of these variants are largely unknown. We integrated chromatin-immunoprecipitation-coupled sequencing and microarray expression profiling in TMPRSS2-ERG gene rearrangement positive DUCaP cells with the GWAS PCa risk SNPs catalog to identify disease susceptibility SNPs localized within functional androgen receptor-binding sites (ARBSs). Among the 48 GWAS index risk SNPs and 3,917 linked SNPs, 80 were found located in ARBSs. Of these, rs11891426:T>G in an intron of the melanophilin gene (MLPH) was within a novel putative auxiliary AR-binding motif, which is enriched in the neighborhood of canonical androgen-responsive elements. T→G exchange attenuated the transcriptional activity of the ARBS in an AR reporter gene assay. The expression of MLPH in primary prostate tumors was significantly lower in those with the G compared with the T allele and correlated significantly with AR protein. Higher melanophilin level in prostate tissue of patients with a favorable PCa risk profile points out a tumor-suppressive effect. These results unravel a hidden link between AR and a functional putative PCa risk SNP, whose allele alteration affects androgen regulation of its host gene MLPH.

Keywords: AR; MLPH; androgen receptor; androgen regulation; melanophilin; prostate cancer; risk SNPs.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Intramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adaptor Proteins, Signal Transducing / genetics*
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Alleles
  • Base Sequence
  • Binding Sites*
  • Cell Line, Tumor
  • Chromatin Immunoprecipitation
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Neoplastic
  • Genotype
  • High-Throughput Nucleotide Sequencing
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Neoplasm Grading
  • Neoplasm Staging
  • Nucleotide Motifs
  • Polymorphism, Single Nucleotide*
  • Position-Specific Scoring Matrices
  • Prostatic Neoplasms / genetics*
  • Prostatic Neoplasms / metabolism*
  • Prostatic Neoplasms / pathology
  • Protein Binding
  • Receptors, Androgen / metabolism*
  • Response Elements*
  • Tumor Burden


  • Adaptor Proteins, Signal Transducing
  • MLPH protein, human
  • Receptors, Androgen