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Open AccessArticle

Vitamin D Status and Association of VDR Genetic Polymorphism to Risk of Breast Cancer in Ethiopia

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Department of Pharmacology and Clinical Pharmacy, Addis Ababa University, P.O. Box 9086 Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
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Department of Pharmacy, Jimma University, P.O. Box 378 Jimma, Ethiopia
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Division of Clinical Pharmacology, Department of Laboratory Medicine, Karolinska Institutet, Karolinska University Hospital, Huddinge, 141 86 Stockholm, Sweden
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Center for Innovative Drug Development and Therapeutic Trials, Addis Ababa University, P.O. Box 9086 Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
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Division of Clinical Pharmacology, Department of Medicine, Karolinska Institutet, 171 76 Solna, Stockholm, Sweden
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Ohio State Global One Health initiative, Office of international affairs, Ohio State University, P.O. Box 9842 Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
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Department of Biochemistry, Addis Ababa University, P.O. Box 9086 Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
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Radiotherapy center, Addis Ababa University, P.O. Box 9086 Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
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Armauer Hansen Research Institute, P.O. Box 1005 Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
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Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Nutrients 2019, 11(2), 289; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu11020289
Received: 28 December 2018 / Revised: 20 January 2019 / Accepted: 22 January 2019 / Published: 29 January 2019
Emerging evidence associates vitamin D deficiency and vitamin D receptor (VDR) genetic variations with risk for breast cancer. This study investigated the prevalence of vitamin D deficiency and its association with tumor characteristics and the implications of VDR genetic variations for risk of breast cancer in Ethiopia. This unmatched case–control study involved 392 female breast cancer patients and 193 controls. The plasma 25-hydroxyvitamin D (25(OH)D3) level was quantified in chemotherapy-naïve (N = 112) and tamoxifen-treated patients (N = 89). Genotyping for the VDR common variant alleles rs7975232 (ApaI), rs2228570 (FokI), and rs731236 (TaqI) was done. Eighty-six percent of the patients were vitamin D deficient (<50 nmol/L). Chemotherapy-naïve breast cancer patients had a higher prevalence of vitamin D deficiency (91.9% vs. 78.3%) compared to the tamoxifen-treated group (p < 0.001). The prevalence of severe vitamin D deficiency (<25 nmol/L) was significantly higher in chemotherapy-naïve (41.1%) than tamoxifen-treated (11.2%) patients. Vitamin D deficiency was not significantly associated with tumor characteristics or VDR genotype. The rs2228570 GG genotype was associated with increased risk of breast cancer (OR = 1.44, 95% confidence interval = 1.01−2.06). Our result indicates that rs2228570 might be a moderate risk factor for breast cancer development in the Ethiopian population. The high prevalence of severe vitamin D deficiency in treatment-naïve breast cancer patients indicates the need for nutritional supplementation of vitamin D at the time of chemotherapy initiation. View Full-Text
Keywords: vitamin D deficiency; VDR; genetic variations; breast cancer; Ethiopia vitamin D deficiency; VDR; genetic variations; breast cancer; Ethiopia
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Ahmed, J.H.; Makonnen, E.; Fotoohi, A.; Yimer, G.; Seifu, D.; Assefa, M.; Tigeneh, W.; Aseffa, A.; Howe, R.; Aklillu, E. Vitamin D Status and Association of VDR Genetic Polymorphism to Risk of Breast Cancer in Ethiopia. Nutrients 2019, 11, 289.

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