Background: There is strong and consistent evidence that a genetic component contributes to the etiology of chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL). A recent genome-wide association study of CLL identified seven genetic variants that increased the risk of CLL within a European population. Methods: We evaluated the association of these variants, or variants in linkage disequilibrium with these variants, with CLL risk in an independent sample of 438 CLL cases and 328 controls. Results: Of these seven single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNP), six had P trend < 0.05 and had estimated odds ratios (OR) that were strikingly comparable to those of the previous study. Associations were seen for rs9378805 [OR, 1.47; 95% confidence intervals (CI), 1.19-1.80; P trend = 0.0003] near IRF4 and rs735665 near GRAMD1B (OR, 1.47; 95% CI, 1.14-1.89; P trend = 0.003). However, no associations (P > 0.05) were found for rs11083846, nor were any found for any SNP in linkage disequilibrium with rs11083846. Conclusions: Our results confirm the previous findings and further support the role of a genetic basis in the etiology of CLL; however, more research is needed to elucidate the causal SNP(s) and the potential manner in which these SNPs or linked SNPs function in CLL pathogenesis.
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