Histologic and Epigenetic Characterization of Pre- and Postmenopausal Breast Cancer from Women in Senegal, West Africa
M Rendi, KH Allison, P Sow, P Toure, A Dem, S Hawes, Q Feng, N Kiviat. Univ of Washington, Seattle
Background: African American women are at increased risk for premenopausal breast CA yet there is currently no cost effective way to screen for these cancers. Ultimately, we aim to develop serum biomarkers for early detection but molecular data are limited at present. As these cancers are relatively rare in the US, we chose to study breast CA among women in Senegal, West Africa. Our aims were to establish the frequency of premenopausal CA in this population, determine if the histology and risk factors of premenopausal breast CA in West Africans are similar to those in African Americans, and to begin to define the epigenetic profiles of such tumors.
Design: 522 consecutive women presenting to the Dakar Tumor Institute in Senegal, West Africa with a breast mass were enrolled and all women underwent a physical examination and medical history. Needle core biopsy and aspiration of the mass was preformed with subsequent histological evaluation. The epigenetic profile of these tumors was then assessed by examining the methylation status of 32 genes known to be involved in breast and other epithelial cancers.
Results: Of the 522 women enrolled, the presence of cancer was confirmed in 252. The average age of women with CA was 45.2 and 144 were premenopausal (57%). The mean gravidity was 5.7 and only 4% of women had any history of hormonal birth control use. Only 1% reported using tobacco while 2% reported using alcohol. 11 had personal history of breast CA (4%) and 10 had a family history of breast CA (4%). Tumor size, grade, nodal status, metastasis, and stage were determined. Of the 32 genes evaluated, there was a statistically significant difference in the methylation status between pre- and postmenopausal women in 8 of the candidate genes; 2 of the genes showed increased methylation in premenopausal women while the remaining 6 showed increased methylation in the postmenopausal women.
Conclusions: Breast CA, in this population, was most commonly premenopausal. Interestingly, the methylation status of tumors from pre- and postmenopausal women was found to be significantly different in 8 genes, suggesting the molecular biology of these tumors differs. Given the similarities in the genetic backgrounds of Western African and African American women, our results have important implications for the understanding of the molecular basis of premenopausal breast CA in these populations. In addition, these 8 genes are likely candidates to begin to develop biomarkers for the early detection of premenopausal breast CA.
Tuesday, March 23, 2010 9:30 AM
Poster Session III # 35, Tuesday Morning