Published online Jun 28, 2010. doi: 10.3748/wjg.v16.i24.3016
Revised: February 10, 2010
Accepted: February 17, 2010
Published online: June 28, 2010
AIM: To assess the relationship between vitamin D receptor (VDR) gene polymorphisms and the presence of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC).
METHODS: Two-hundred forty patients who underwent liver transplantation were studied. The etiologies of liver disease were hepatitis C (100 patients), hepatitis B (37) and alcoholic liver disease (103). A group of 236 healthy subjects served as controls. HCC in the explanted liver was detected in 80 patients. The following single nucleotide gene polymorphisms of the VDR were investigated by polymerase chain reaction and restriction fragment length polymorphism: FokI C>T (F/f), BsmI A>G (B/b), ApaI T>G (A/a) and TaqI T>C (T/t) (BAT).
RESULTS: The frequencies of genotypes in patients without and with HCC were for FokI F/F = 69, F/f = 73, f/f = 18 and F/F = 36, F/f = 36, f/f = 8; BsmI b/b = 45, B/b = 87, B/B = 28 and b/b = 33, B/b = 35, B/B = 12; for ApaI A/A = 53, A/a = 85, a/a = 22 and A/A = 27, A/a = 38, a/a = 15; for TaqI T/T = 44, T/t = 88, t/t = 28 and T/T = 32, T/t = 38, t/t = 10. Carriage of the b/b genotype of BsmI and the T/T genotype of TaqI was significantly associated with HCC (45/160 vs 33/80, P < 0.05 and 44/160 vs 32/80, P < 0.05, respectively). The absence of the A-T-C protective allele of BAT was significantly associated with the presence of HCC (46/80 vs 68/160, P < 0.05). A strong association was observed between carriage of the BAT A-T-C and G-T-T haplotypes and HCC only in alcoholic liver disease (7/46 vs 12/36 vs 11/21, P < 0.002, respectively).
CONCLUSION: VDR genetic polymorphisms are significantly associated with the occurrence of HCC in patients with liver cirrhosis. This relationship is more specific for patients with an alcoholic etiology.