A polygenic risk score for nasopharyngeal carcinoma shows potential for risk stratification and personalized screening

Nat Commun. 2022 Apr 12;13(1):1966. doi: 10.1038/s41467-022-29570-4.


Polygenic risk scores (PRS) have the potential to identify individuals at risk of diseases, optimizing treatment, and predicting survival outcomes. Here, we construct and validate a genome-wide association study (GWAS) derived PRS for nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPC), using a multi-center study of six populations (6 059 NPC cases and 7 582 controls), and evaluate its utility in a nested case-control study. We show that the PRS enables effective identification of NPC high-risk individuals (AUC = 0.65) and improves the risk prediction with the PRS incremental deciles in each population (Ptrend ranging from 2.79 × 10-7 to 4.79 × 10-44). By incorporating the PRS into EBV-serology-based NPC screening, the test's positive predictive value (PPV) is increased from an average of 4.84% to 8.38% and 11.91% in the top 10% and 5% PRS, respectively. In summary, the GWAS-derived PRS, together with the EBV test, significantly improves NPC risk stratification and informs personalized screening.

Publication types

  • Multicenter Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Case-Control Studies
  • Genome-Wide Association Study*
  • Humans
  • Nasopharyngeal Carcinoma / diagnosis
  • Nasopharyngeal Carcinoma / genetics
  • Nasopharyngeal Neoplasms* / diagnosis
  • Nasopharyngeal Neoplasms* / genetics
  • Risk Assessment
  • Risk Factors