Evidence that the lung adenocarcinoma EML4-ALK fusion gene is not caused by exposure to secondhand tobacco smoke during childhood

Bríd M. Ryan, Yi Wang, Jin Jen, Eunhee S. Yi, Susan Olivo-Marston, Ping Yang, Curtis C. Harris

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

3 Scopus citations

Abstract

Background: The EML4-ALK fusion gene is more frequently found in younger, never smoking patients with lung cancer. Meanwhile, never smokers exposed to secondhand tobacco smoke (SHS) during childhood are diagnosed at a younger age compared with never smoking patients with lung cancer who are not exposed. We, therefore, hypothesized that SHS, which can induce DNA damage, is associated with the EML4-ALK fusion gene. Methods: We compared the frequency of the EML4-ALK fusion gene among 197 never smoker patients with lung cancer with and without a history of exposure to SHS during childhood at Mayo Clinic. Results: The EML4-ALK fusion gene was detected in 33% of cases from never smokers with a history of SHS exposure during childhood, whereas 47% of never smoking lung cancer cases without a history of childhood SHS exposure tested positive for the fusion gene. Conclusions: The EML4-ALK fusion gene is not enriched in tumors from individuals exposed to SHS during childhood. Impact: These data suggest that childhood exposure to SHS is not a significant etiologic cause of the EML4- ALK fusion gene in lung cancer.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1432-1434
Number of pages3
JournalCancer Epidemiology Biomarkers and Prevention
Volume23
Issue number7
DOIs
StatePublished - Jul 2014

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Epidemiology
  • Oncology

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