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Genetic Epidemiology of Breast Cancer in Latin America

Department of Medicine, Division of General Internal Medicine, University of California San Francisco, San Francisco, CA 94143-1793, USA
Grupo de investigación en biología del cáncer, Instituto Nacional de Cancerología, Bogotá 11001000, Colombia
Cancer Biology Division, Ponce Research Institute, Ponce Health Sciences University, Ponce, PR 00732, USA
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Genes 2019, 10(2), 153;
Received: 19 December 2018 / Revised: 13 February 2019 / Accepted: 14 February 2019 / Published: 18 February 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Genetic Epidemiology of Complex Diseases in Latin America)
The last 10 years witnessed an acceleration of our understanding of what genetic factors underpin the risk of breast cancer. Rare high- and moderate-penetrance variants such as those in the BRCA genes account for a small proportion of the familial risk of breast cancer. Low-penetrance alleles are expected to underlie the remaining heritability. By now, there are about 180 genetic polymorphisms that are associated with risk, most of them of modest effect. In combination, they can be used to identify women at the lowest or highest ends of the risk spectrum, which might lead to more efficient cancer prevention strategies. Most of these variants were discovered in populations of European descent. As a result, we might be failing to discover additional polymorphisms that could explain risk in other groups. This review highlights breast cancer genetic epidemiology studies conducted in Latin America, and summarizes the information that they provide, with special attention to similarities and differences with studies in other populations. It includes studies of common variants, as well as moderate- and high-penetrance variants. In addition, it addresses the gaps that need to be bridged in order to better understand breast cancer genetic risk in Latin America. View Full-Text
Keywords: genetic epidemiology; breast cancer; Latin America genetic epidemiology; breast cancer; Latin America
MDPI and ACS Style

Zavala, V.A.; Serrano-Gomez, S.J.; Dutil, J.; Fejerman, L. Genetic Epidemiology of Breast Cancer in Latin America. Genes 2019, 10, 153.

AMA Style

Zavala VA, Serrano-Gomez SJ, Dutil J, Fejerman L. Genetic Epidemiology of Breast Cancer in Latin America. Genes. 2019; 10(2):153.

Chicago/Turabian Style

Zavala, Valentina A., Silvia J. Serrano-Gomez, Julie Dutil, and Laura Fejerman. 2019. "Genetic Epidemiology of Breast Cancer in Latin America" Genes 10, no. 2: 153.

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