Gene Summary

Gene:MTHFD1; methylenetetrahydrofolate dehydrogenase, cyclohydrolase and formyltetrahydrofolate synthetase 1
Summary:This gene encodes a protein that possesses three distinct enzymatic activities, 5,10-methylenetetrahydrofolate dehydrogenase, 5,10-methenyltetrahydrofolate cyclohydrolase and 10-formyltetrahydrofolate synthetase. Each of these activities catalyzes one of three sequential reactions in the interconversion of 1-carbon derivatives of tetrahydrofolate, which are substrates for methionine, thymidylate, and de novo purine syntheses. The trifunctional enzymatic activities are conferred by two major domains, an aminoterminal portion containing the dehydrogenase and cyclohydrolase activities and a larger synthetase domain. [provided by RefSeq, Jul 2008]
Databases:VEGA, OMIM, HGNC, Ensembl, GeneCard, Gene
Protein:C-1-tetrahydrofolate synthase, cytoplasmic
Source:NCBIAccessed: 11 March, 2017


What does this gene/protein do?
Show (19)
Pathways:What pathways are this gene/protein implicaed in?
Show (2)

Cancer Overview

Research Indicators

Publications Per Year (1992-2017)
Graph generated 11 March 2017 using data from PubMed using criteria.

Literature Analysis

Mouse over the terms for more detail; many indicate links which you can click for dedicated pages about the topic.

  • Adolescents
  • Chromosome 14
  • Metabolic Networks and Pathways
  • Folic Acid
  • Newborns
  • Genetic Predisposition
  • Genotype
  • Methylenetetrahydrofolate Reductase (NADPH2)
  • Single Nucleotide Polymorphism
  • Infant
  • Survival Rate
  • Diet
  • Childhood Cancer
  • Polymerase Chain Reaction
  • Tetrahydrofolate Dehydrogenase
  • Ovarian Cancer
  • Breast Cancer
  • Colorectal Cancer
  • Genetic Variation
  • 5-Methyltetrahydrofolate-Homocysteine S-Methyltransferase
  • S-Adenosylmethionine
  • Polymorphism
  • DNA Methylation
  • Thymidylate Synthase
  • Head and Neck Cancers
  • Methylenetetrahydrofolate Dehydrogenase (NADP)
  • Receptors, Progesterone
  • Odds Ratio
  • Restriction Fragment Length Polymorphism
  • Ferredoxin-NADP Reductase
  • Cervical Cancer
  • Alleles
  • Acute Lymphocytic Leukaemia
  • Glycine Hydroxymethyltransferase
  • Publication Bias
  • Vincristine
  • Minor Histocompatibility Antigens
  • Xenobiotics
  • Smoking
  • Tumor Suppressor Proteins
  • Case-Control Studies
Tag cloud generated 11 March, 2017 using data from PubMed, MeSH and CancerIndex

Specific Cancers (6)

Data table showing topics related to specific cancers and associated disorders. Scope includes mutations and abnormal protein expression.

Note: list is not exhaustive. Number of papers are based on searches of PubMed (click on topic title for arbitrary criteria used).

Latest Publications: MTHFD1 (cancer-related)

Piskounova E, Agathocleous M, Murphy MM, et al.
Oxidative stress inhibits distant metastasis by human melanoma cells.
Nature. 2015; 527(7577):186-91 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Solid cancer cells commonly enter the blood and disseminate systemically, but are highly inefficient at forming distant metastases for poorly understood reasons. Here we studied human melanomas that differed in their metastasis histories in patients and in their capacity to metastasize in NOD-SCID-Il2rg(-/-) (NSG) mice. We show that melanomas had high frequencies of cells that formed subcutaneous tumours, but much lower percentages of cells that formed tumours after intravenous or intrasplenic transplantation, particularly among inefficiently metastasizing melanomas. Melanoma cells in the blood and visceral organs experienced oxidative stress not observed in established subcutaneous tumours. Successfully metastasizing melanomas underwent reversible metabolic changes during metastasis that increased their capacity to withstand oxidative stress, including increased dependence on NADPH-generating enzymes in the folate pathway. Antioxidants promoted distant metastasis in NSG mice. Folate pathway inhibition using low-dose methotrexate, ALDH1L2 knockdown, or MTHFD1 knockdown inhibited distant metastasis without significantly affecting the growth of subcutaneous tumours in the same mice. Oxidative stress thus limits distant metastasis by melanoma cells in vivo.

Moussa C, Ross N, Jolette P, MacFarlane AJ
Altered folate metabolism modifies cell proliferation and progesterone secretion in human placental choriocarcinoma JEG-3 cells.
Br J Nutr. 2015; 114(6):844-52 [PubMed] Related Publications
Folate is an essential B vitamin required for de novo purine and thymidylate synthesis, and for the remethylation of homocysteine to form methionine. Folate deficiency has been associated with placenta-related pregnancy complications, as have SNP in genes of the folate-dependent enzymes, methionine synthase (MTR) and methylenetetrahydrofolate dehydrogenase 1 (MTHFD1). We aimed to determine the effect of altered folate metabolism on placental cell proliferation, viability and invasive capacity and on progesterone and human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) secretion. Human placental choriocarcinoma (JEG-3) cells cultured in low folic acid (FA) (2 nM) demonstrated 13% (P<0.001) and 26% (P<0.001) lower proliferation, 5.5% (P=0.025) and 7.5% (P=0.004) lower invasion capacity, and 5 to 7.5% (P=0.004-0.025) lower viability compared with control (20 nM) or supplemented (100 nM) cells, respectively. FA concentration had no effect on progesterone or hCG secretion. Small interfering RNA (siRNA) knockdown of MTR gene and protein expression resulted in 17.7% (P<0.0001) lower proliferation and 61% (P=0.014) higher progesterone secretion, but had no effect on cell invasion and hCG secretion. siRNA knockdown of MTHFD1 gene expression in the absence of detectable changes in protein expression resulted in 10.3% (P=0.001) lower cell proliferation, but had no effect on cell invasion and progesterone or hCG secretion. Our data indicate that impaired folate metabolism can result in lower trophoblast proliferation, and could alter viability, invasion capacity and progesterone secretion, which may explain in part the observed associations between folate and placenta-related complications.

Cheng TY, Makar KW, Neuhouser ML, et al.
Folate-mediated one-carbon metabolism genes and interactions with nutritional factors on colorectal cancer risk: Women's Health Initiative Observational Study.
Cancer. 2015; 121(20):3684-91 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Investigations of folate-mediated one-carbon metabolism (FOCM) genes and gene-nutrient interactions with respect to colorectal cancer (CRC) risk are limited to candidate polymorphisms and dietary folate. This study comprehensively investigated associations between genetic variants in FOCM and CRC risk and whether the FOCM nutrient status modified these associations.
METHODS: Two hundred eighty-eight candidate and tagging single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in 30 FOCM genes were genotyped for 821 incident CRC case-control matched pairs in the Women's Health Initiative Observational Study cohort. FOCM biomarkers (red blood cell [RBC] folate, plasma folate, pyridoxal-5'-phosphate [PLP], vitamin B12, and homocysteine) and self-reported alcohol consumption were measured at the baseline. Conditional logistic regression was implemented; effect modification was examined on the basis of known enzyme-nutrient relations.
RESULTS: Statistically significant associations were observed between CRC risk and functionally defined candidate SNPs of methylenetetrahydrofolate dehydrogenase 1 (MTHFD1; K134R), 5-methyltetrahydrofolate-homocysteine methyltransferase reductase (MTRR; P450R), and PR domain containing 2 with ZNF domain (PRDM2; S450N) and a literature candidate SNP of thymidylate synthase (TYMS; g.676789A>T; nominal P < .05). In addition, suggestive associations were noted for tagging SNPs in cystathionine-β-synthase (CBS), dihydrofolate reductase (DHFR), DNA (cytosine-5-)-methyltransferase 3β (DNMT3B), methionine adenosyltransferase I α (MAT1A), MTHFD1, and MTRR (nominal P < .05; adjusted P, not significant). Significant interactions between nutrient biomarkers and candidate polymorphisms were observed for 1) plasma/RBC folate and folate hydrolase 1 (FOLH1), paraoxonase 1 (PON1), transcobalamin II (TCN2), DNMT1, and DNMT3B; 2) plasma PLP and TYMS TS3; 3) plasma B12 and betaine-homocysteine S-methyltransferase 2 (BHMT2); and 4) homocysteine and methylenetetrahydrofolate reductase (MTHFR) and alanyl-transfer RNA synthetase (AARS).
CONCLUSIONS: Genetic variants in FOCM genes are associated with CRC risk among postmenopausal women. FOCM nutrients continue to emerge as effect modifiers of genetic influences on CRC risk.

Gézsi A, Lautner-Csorba O, Erdélyi DJ, et al.
In interaction with gender a common CYP3A4 polymorphism may influence the survival rate of chemotherapy for childhood acute lymphoblastic leukemia.
Pharmacogenomics J. 2015; 15(3):241-7 [PubMed] Related Publications
CYP3A4 has an important role in the metabolisms of many drugs used in acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) therapy; still, there are practically no publications about the role of CYP3A4 polymorphisms in ALL pharmacogenomics. We genotyped eight common single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in the CYP3A4 and CYP3A5 genes in 511 children with ALL and investigated whether they influenced the survival of the patients. We involved additional 127 SNPs in 34 candidate genes and searched for interactions with respect to the survival rates. Significant association between the survival rates and the common rs2246709 SNP in the CYP3A4 gene was observed. The gender of the patients and the rs1076991 in the MTHFD1 gene strongly influenced this effect. We calculated new risk assessments involving the gender-rs2246709 interaction and showed that they significantly outperformed the earlier risk-group assessments at every time point. If this finding is confirmed in other populations, it can have a considerable prognostic significance.

Lautner-Csorba O, Gézsi A, Erdélyi DJ, et al.
Roles of genetic polymorphisms in the folate pathway in childhood acute lymphoblastic leukemia evaluated by Bayesian relevance and effect size analysis.
PLoS One. 2013; 8(8):e69843 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
In this study we investigated whether polymorphisms in the folate pathway influenced the risk of childhood acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) or the survival rate of the patients. For this we selected and genotyped 67 SNPs in 15 genes in the folate pathway in 543 children with ALL and 529 controls. The results were evaluated by gender adjusted logistic regression and by the Bayesian network based Bayesian multilevel analysis of relevance (BN-BMLA) methods. Bayesian structure based odds ratios for the relevant variables and interactions were also calculated. Altogether 9 SNPs in 8 genes were associated with altered susceptibility to ALL. After correction for multiple testing, two associations remained significant. The genotype distribution of the MTHFD1 rs1076991 differed significantly between the ALL and control population. Analyzing the subtypes of the disease the GG genotype increased only the risk of B-cell ALL (p = 3.52×10(-4); OR = 2.00). The GG genotype of the rs3776455 SNP in the MTRR gene was associated with a significantly reduced risk to ALL (p = 1.21×10(-3); OR = 0.55), which resulted mainly from the reduced risk to B-cell and hyperdiploid-ALL. The TC genotype of the rs9909104 SNP in the SHMT1 gene was associated with a lower survival rate comparing it to the TT genotype (80.2% vs. 88.8%; p = 0.01). The BN-BMLA confirmed the main findings of the frequentist-based analysis and showed structural interactional maps and the probabilities of the different structural association types of the relevant SNPs especially in the hyperdiploid-ALL, involving additional SNPs in genes like TYMS, DHFR and GGH. We also investigated the statistical interactions and redundancies using structural model properties. These results gave further evidence that polymorphisms in the folate pathway could influence the ALL risk and the effectiveness of the therapy. It was also shown that in gene association studies the BN-BMLA could be a useful supplementary to the traditional frequentist-based statistical method.

Zhang H, Ma H, Li L, et al.
Association of methylenetetrahydrofolate dehydrogenase 1 polymorphisms with cancer: a meta-analysis.
PLoS One. 2013; 8(7):e69366 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Studies investigating the association between single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) of the methylenetetrahydrofolate dehydrogenase 1 (MTHFD1) and cancer risk report conflicting results. To derive a more precise estimation of the relationship between MTHFD1 polymorphisms and cancer risk, the present meta-analysis was carried out.
METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: A comprehensive search was conducted to determine all the eligible studies about MTHFD1 polymorphisms and cancer risk. Combined odds ratios (ORs) and 95% confidence intervals (CIs) were used to assess the strength of the association between the MTHFD1 polymorphisms and cancer risk. We investigated by meta-analysis the effects of 2 polymorphisms in MTHFD1: G1958A (17 studies, 12348 cases, 44132 controls) and G401A (20 studies, 8446 cases, 14020 controls). The overall results indicated no major influence of these 2 polymorphisms on cancer risk. For G1958A, a decreased cancer risk was found in acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL)/Asians (the dominant: OR = 0.74, 95% CI = 0.58-0.94, P = 0.01; allelic: OR = 0.80, 95% CI = 0.65-0.99, P = 0.04) and other cancers (recessive: OR = 0.80, 95% CI = 0.66-0.96, P = 0.02). For G401A, the data showed that MTHFD1 G401A polymorphism was associated with a decreased colon cancer risk under dominant model (OR = 0.89, 95% CI = 0.80-0.99, P = 0.04).
CONCLUSIONS: The results suggest that MTHFD1 G1958A polymorphism might be associated with a decreased risk of ALL and other cancers. Meanwhile, the MTHFD1 G401A might play a protective role in the development of colon cancer. Large-scale and well-designed case-control studies are necessary to validate the risk identified in the present meta-analysis.

Ashmore JH, Lesko SM, Muscat JE, et al.
Association of dietary and supplemental folate intake and polymorphisms in three FOCM pathway genes with colorectal cancer in a population-based case-control study.
Genes Chromosomes Cancer. 2013; 52(10):945-53 [PubMed] Related Publications
Previous research has shown that greater intakes of dietary folate are associated with reduced risk for colorectal cancer (CRC) and that single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in genes involved in folate-mediated one-carbon metabolism (FOCM) also may be involved in altering CRC risk. The objective of this study was to evaluate the role of folate intake (and intakes of related dietary components such as methionine), 35 SNPs in three FOCM pathway genes (MTHFD1, MTHFR, and TYMS), and their interactions on CRC risk in a population-based case-control study in Pennsylvania (686 cases, 740 controls). Diet and supplement use was assessed for the year before diagnosis or interview for cases and controls, respectively, with a modified Diet History Questionnaire from the National Cancer Institute. Odds ratios (OR) and 95% confidence intervals (95% CI) were estimated using unconditional logistic regression. Using a dominant model for the variant allele, several SNPs were significantly associated with CRC including MTHFD1 rs8003379 (OR = 1.65; 95% CI = 1.00-2.73) and rs17824591 (OR = 1.98; 95% CI = 1.14-3.41) and the TYMS rs2853533 SNP (OR = 1.38; 95% CI = 1.05-1.80). Using a nondominant model, the AA genotype for MTHFR rs1476413 exhibited a marginally significant (OR = 1.56; 95% CI = 1.00-2.44) association with CRC. Two TYMS SNPs (rs16948305 and rs495139) exhibited significant (P = 0.024 and P = 0.040, respectively) gene-diet interactions with folate intake. One MTHFD1 (P = 0.019) and one MTHFR (P = 0.042) SNP exhibited gene-diet interactions with methionine intake. These findings suggest that allelic variants in genes involved in FOCM interact with dietary factors including folate and methionine to modify risk for CRC.

Figueiredo JC, Levine AJ, Crott JW, et al.
Folate-genetics and colorectal neoplasia: what we know and need to know next.
Mol Nutr Food Res. 2013; 57(4):607-27 [PubMed] Related Publications
SCOPE: The metabolism of folate involves a complex network of polymorphic enzymes that may explain a proportion of the risk associated with colorectal neoplasia. Over 60 observational studies primarily in non-Hispanic White populations have been conducted on selected genetic variants in specific genes, MTHFR, MTR, MTRR, CBS, TCNII, RFC, GCPII, SHMT, TYMS, and MTHFD1, including five meta-analyses on MTHFR 677C>T (rs1801133) and MTHFR 1298C>T (rs1801131); two meta-analyses on MTR-2756A>C (rs1805087); and one for MTRR 66A>G (rs1801394).
METHODS AND RESULTS: This systematic review synthesizes these data, highlighting the consistent inverse association between MTHFR 677TT genotype and risk of colorectal cancer (CRC) and its null association with adenoma risk. Results for other variants varied across individual studies; in our meta-analyses we observed some evidence for SHMT 1420C>T (rs1979277) ((odds ratio) OR = 0.85; 95% confidence interval (CI) = 0.73-1.00 for TT v. CC) and TYMS 5' 28 bp repeat (rs34743033) and CRC risk (OR = 0.84; 95% CI = 0.75-0.94 for 2R/3R v. 3R/3R and OR = 0.82; 95% CI = 0.69-0.98 for 2R/2R v. 3R/3R).
CONCLUSION: To gain further insight into the role of folate variants in colorectal neoplasia will require incorporating measures of the metabolites, including B-vitamin cofactors, homocysteine and S-adenosylmethionine, and innovative statistical methods to better approximate the folate one-carbon metabolism pathway.

Babyshkina N, Malinovskaya E, Nazarenko M, et al.
The effect of folate-related SNPs on clinicopathological features, response to neoadjuvant treatment and survival in pre- and postmenopausal breast cancer patients.
Gene. 2013; 518(2):397-404 [PubMed] Related Publications
This study aimed to investigate the relationship of ten single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in the MTHFR, MTR, MTRR, DHFR, MTHFD1, TS, RFC1 and DNMT3b genes with cancer survival, therapeutic response to neoadjuvant chemotherapy and clinicopathological characteristics in 300 pre- and postmenopausal breast cancer patients of a Russian Western Siberian population. We found that the MTHFR 677CT genotype as well as combination of MTHFR 677CT and 677TT genotype was related to tumor size and estrogen-positive status in postmenopausal group. The RFC1 80А allele was associated with an increased risk of lymph node metastases among postmenopausal women. The MTHFR 677TT genotype was significantly correlated with a better progression-free survival in premenopausal patients. In contrast, a worse outcome was observed in this group patient with MTHFD1 1958AA genotype. In the multivariate analysis, the MTHFD1 1958AA genotype was identified as an independent prognostic factor for premenopausal breast cancer survival. Our findings provide evidence for associations of breast cancer survival with folate-related SNPs in a population of Western Siberian region of Russia and the MTHFD1 (1958G>A) may have additional prognostic value especially among premenopausal patients.

Zee RY, Rose L, Chasman DI, Ridker PM
Genetic variation of fifteen folate metabolic pathway associated gene loci and the risk of incident head and neck carcinoma: the Women's Genome Health Study.
Clin Chim Acta. 2013; 418:33-6 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
OBJECTIVE: Recent studies have demonstrated the importance of folate metabolic pathway (FMP) in the pathogenesis of head and neck carcinoma (HNC). Whether the genetic variation within the FMP associated genes modulates HNC remains elusive. To date, prospective, epidemiological data on the relationship of FMP gene variation with the risk of HNC are sparse.
METHODS: The association between 203 tag-SNPs (tSNPs) of 15 FMP associated genes (CBS, BHMT, DHFR, FOLR1, FOLR2, FOLR3, MTHFR, MTR, MTRR, MTHFD1, RFC1, SHMT1, SLC19A1, TCN2, and TYMS) and incident HNC was investigated in 23,294 Caucasian female participants of the prospective Women's Genome Health Study. All were free of known cancer at baseline. During a 15-year follow-up period, 55 participants developed a first ever HNC. Multivariable Cox regression analysis was performed to investigate the relationship between genotypes and HNC risk assuming an additive genetic model. Haplotype-block analysis was also performed.
RESULTS: A total of 11 tSNPs within DHFR, MTHFR, RFC1, and TYMS were associated with HNC risk (all p-uncorrected <0.050). Further investigation using the haplotype-block analysis revealed an association of several prespecified haplotypes of RFC1 with HNC risk (all p-uncorrected <0.050).
CONCLUSION: If corroborated in other large prospective studies, the present findings suggest that genetic variation within the folate metabolic pathway gene loci examined, in particular, the replication factor C-1 (RFC1) gene variation may influence HNC risk.

Liu AY, Scherer D, Poole E, et al.
Gene-diet-interactions in folate-mediated one-carbon metabolism modify colon cancer risk.
Mol Nutr Food Res. 2013; 57(4):721-34 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
SCOPE: The importance of folate-mediated one-carbon metabolism (FOCM) in colorectal carcinogenesis is emphasized by observations that high dietary folate intake is associated with decreased risk of colon cancer (CC) and its precursors. Additionally, polymorphisms in FOCM-related genes have been repeatedly associated with risk, supporting a causal relationship between folate and colorectal carcinogenesis.
METHODS AND RESULTS: We investigated ten candidate polymorphisms with defined or probable functional impact in eight FOCM-related genes (SHMT1, DHFR, DNMT1, MTHFD1, MTHFR, MTRR, TCN2, and TDG) in 1609 CC cases and 1974 controls for association with CC risk and for interaction with dietary factors. No polymorphism was statistically significantly associated with overall risk of CC. However, statistically significant interactions modifying CC risk were observed for DNMT1 I311V with dietary folate, methionine, vitamin B2 , and vitamin B12 intake and for MTRR I22M with dietary folate, a predefined one-carbon dietary pattern, and vitamin B6 intake. We observed statistically significant gene-diet interactions with five additional polymorphisms.
CONCLUSION: Our results provide evidence that FOCM-related dietary intakes modify the association between CC risk and FOCM allelic variants. These findings add to observations showing that folate-related gene-nutrient interactions play an important role in modifying the risk of CC.

Pawlik P, Mostowska A, Lianeri M, et al.
Folate and choline metabolism gene variants in relation to ovarian cancer risk in the Polish population.
Mol Biol Rep. 2012; 39(5):5553-60 [PubMed] Related Publications
Data indicates that genetic factors alone do not account for ovarian tumorigenesis, suggesting that epigenetic status additionally affects this process. Therefore, we assessed the possible contribution of polymorphic variants of genes that may affect DNA methylation to the risk of ovarian cancer incidence in the Polish population. Using PCR-RFLP and HRM analyses, we studied the distribution of BHMT (rs3733890), MTHFD1 (rs2236225), MTHFR (rs1801133), MTR (rs1805087), MTRR (rs1801394) and TCN2 (rs1801198) genotypes and alleles in patients with ovarian cancer (n = 136) and controls (n = 160). Moreover, using DNA and methylation-specific PCR (MSP) we also determined the methylation of the Cadherin 13 (CDH13) promoter in cancerous tissue from these patients. We did not observe a significant association between all studied gene variants and the incidence of ovarian cancer. The lowest P (trend) = 0.1226 was observed for the MTHFR Ala222Val polymorphism. Moreover, the lowest P = 0.0772 was found in the comparison of MTHFR Ala/Ala versus Val/Val and Val/Ala genotypes in patients and control groups. The multifactor dimensionality reduction analysis also did not indicate a significant interactive genetic effect on ovarian cancer incidence for all analyzed SNPs. However, we observed frequent methylation of the CDH13 promoter in approximately 21% (29/136) patients with ovarian carcinomas. Our results might suggest that the selected polymorphic gene variants may not contribute to ovarian cancer incidence.

Erčulj N, Kotnik BF, Debeljak M, et al.
Influence of folate pathway polymorphisms on high-dose methotrexate-related toxicity and survival in childhood acute lymphoblastic leukemia.
Leuk Lymphoma. 2012; 53(6):1096-104 [PubMed] Related Publications
The prediction of high-dose methotrexate (HD-MTX) toxicity is a key issue in the individualization of treatment in childhood acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL). Our aim was to evaluate the influence of MTX pathway polymorphisms on HD-MTX treatment outcome in children with ALL. In total, 167 children with ALL were genotyped for methylenetetrahydrofolate dehydrogenase (MTHFD1) 1958G > A, methylenetetrahydrofolate reductase (MTHFR) 677C > T and 1298A > C and thymidylate synthase (TYMS) 2R > 3R polymorphisms. The MTHFD1 1958A allele significantly reduced the odds of hepatotoxicity (adjusted p = 0.009), while the TYMS 3R allele significantly reduced the odds of leukocytopenia and thrombocytopenia (adjusted p = 0.005 and adjusted p = 0.002, respectively). MTHFR polymorphisms did not influence HD-MTX-related toxicity, but a significant effect of MTHFR 677C > T-TYMS 2R > 3R and MTHFD1 1958G > A-MTHFR 677C > T interactions on HD-MTX-related toxicity was observed. None of the investigated polymorphisms influenced survival. Our study suggests an important role of polymorphisms and gene-gene interactions within the folate pathway in HD-MTX-related toxicity in childhood ALL.

Galbiatti AL, da Silva LM, Ruiz-Cintra MT, et al.
Association between 11 genetic polymorphisms in folate-metabolising genes and head and neck cancer risk.
Eur J Cancer. 2012; 48(10):1525-31 [PubMed] Related Publications
Genetic polymorphisms in folate metabolism may affect the risk of head and neck cancer (HNSCC) due to its involvement in DNA methylation and synthesis. We conducted a case-control study (265 HNSCC cases and 466 non-cancer controls) to investigate associations of MTHFR C677T and A1298C, MTR A2756G, MTRR A66G, RFC1 A80G, MTHFD1 G1958A, CBS 844ins68, TC2 C776G and A67G, SHMT C1420T and BHMT G742A polymorphisms with HNSCC risk. Interactions between polymorphisms and survival time, tobacco and alcohol habits, age, gender and tumour staging (TNM classification) were evaluated by multiple logistic regression analysis. We found that age ≥ 49 years (P<0.001), male gender (P=0.03), tobacco habit (P<0.001), MTHFR 1298AC/CC (P=0.028), MTR 2756AG/GG (P=0.010) and RFC1 80AG/GG (P=0.015) genotypes were associated with an increased risk of HNSCC. There were interactions between lower survival and CBS 844ins68 (P=0.005); age ≥ 49 years and MTR 2756 AG/GG (P=0.004) and RFC1 80AG/GG (P=0.006) genotypes; male gender and MTHFR 1298 AC/CC (P=0.030), MTR 2756 AG/GG (P=0.006) and RFC1 80 AG/GG (P=0.009); tobacco non-habit and MTHFD1 1958GA/AA (P=0.040); tobacco and MTHFR 1298 AC/CC (P=0.054) and MTR 2756 AG/GG (P=0.010); alcohol non-consume and RFC1 80 AG/GG (P=0.008) with HNSCC increased risk. MTHFR C677CT/TT genotypes were less frequently in advanced tumours (P=0.04). In conclusion, our data provide evidence that folate metabolism genetic polymorphisms associated with variables as advanced age, male gender, tobacco and alcohol increase HNSCC development; CBS 844ins68 and MTHFR C677T polymorphisms are associated with less survival time and advanced stage tumours, respectively.

Windsor RE, Strauss SJ, Kallis C, et al.
Germline genetic polymorphisms may influence chemotherapy response and disease outcome in osteosarcoma: a pilot study.
Cancer. 2012; 118(7):1856-67 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Osteosarcoma is the most common malignant bone tumor in children and young people. Efficacy of multiagent MAP (methotrexate, doxorubicin [Adriamycin], cisplatin) chemotherapy may be influenced by multiple cellular pathways. This pilot study aimed to investigate the association of 36 candidate genetic polymorphisms in MAP pathway genes with histological response, survival, and grade 3-4 chemotherapy toxicity in osteosarcoma.
METHODS: Blood samples were obtained from 60 patients who had completed MAP chemotherapy. All patients were manually genotyped for 5 polymorphisms. The remaining 31 polymorphisms were genotyped in 50 patients using the Illumina 610-Quad microarray. Associations between candidate polymorphisms and histological response, progression-free survival, and toxicity were estimated using Pearson chi-square and Fisher exact tests, the Kaplan-Meier method, the log-rank test, and the Cox proportional hazards model.
RESULTS: Poor histological response was increased in variants of ABCC2 c.24C>T (P = .011) and GSTP1 c.313A>G p.Ile(105)Val (P = .009), whereas MTHFD1 c.1958G>A p.Arg(653)Gln was protective (P = .03). Methotrexate toxicity was increased in variants of MTHFR c.1298A>C p.Glu(429)Ala (P = .038), ABCB1 c.3435T>C Ile(145)Ile (P = .027), and ABCC2 c.3563T>A p.Val(1188)Glu (P = .028). Variants of GSTP1 c.313A>G p.Ile(105)Val were at increased risk of myelosuppression (P = .024) and cardiac damage (P = .008).
CONCLUSIONS: This pilot study represents the most comprehensive study to date examining the role of genetic polymorphisms in osteosarcoma. Although small and retrospective, it shows that several polymorphisms appear to significantly influence toxicity and clinical outcome. These deserve prospective validation in the hope of optimizing treatment for resistant disease and reducing the late effects burden.

Metayer C, Scélo G, Chokkalingam AP, et al.
Genetic variants in the folate pathway and risk of childhood acute lymphoblastic leukemia.
Cancer Causes Control. 2011; 22(9):1243-58 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
OBJECTIVE: Folate is involved in the one-carbon metabolism that plays an essential role in the synthesis, repair, and methylation of DNA. We examined whether child's germline genetic variation in the folate pathway is associated with childhood acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL), and whether periconception maternal folate and alcohol intake modify the risk.
METHODS: Seventy-six single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs), including 66 haplotype-tagging SNPs in 10 genes (CBS, DHFR, FOLH1, MTHFD1, MTHFR, MTR, MTRR, SHMT1, SLC19A1, and TYMS), were genotyped in 377 ALL cases and 448 controls. Log-additive associations between genotypes and ALL risk were adjusted for age, sex, Hispanic ethnicity (when appropriate), and maternal race.
RESULTS: Single and haplotype SNPs analyses showed statistically significant associations between SNPs located in (or adjacent to) CBS, MTRR, TYMS/ENOFS, and childhood ALL. Many regions of CBS were associated with childhood ALL in Hispanics and non-Hispanics (p < 0.01). Levels of maternal folate intake modified associations with SNPs in CBS, MTRR, and TYMS.
CONCLUSION: Our data suggest the importance of genetic variability in the folate pathway and childhood ALL risk.

Yang L, Liu L, Wang J, et al.
Polymorphisms in folate-related genes: impact on risk of adult acute lymphoblastic leukemia rather than pediatric in Han Chinese.
Leuk Lymphoma. 2011; 52(9):1770-6 [PubMed] Related Publications
Folate metabolism plays an essential role in the processes of DNA synthesis and methylation. An aberrant folate metabolism caused by a genetic polymorphism may lead to genomic instability and affect the susceptibility to malignancies including acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL). This study was designed to explore the correlation between the polymorphisms in folate-related genes and the risk of ALL in Han Chinese. The DNA was isolated from 231 patients with pediatric ALL, 130 patients with adult ALL, and 367 healthy subjects (as controls). Polymorphisms were examined for RFC1 80G > A, DHFR 19 bp del/ins and 317A > G, SHMT1 1420C > T, MTHFR 677C > T and 1298A > C, MTR 2756A > G, MTRR 66A > G, TYMS 3R/2R, MTHFD1 1958G > A, and ABCG2 421G > T using real-time polymerase chain reaction (PCR) or PCR-restriction fragment length polymorphism (RFLP). The risk of adult ALL was increased by the RFC1 80AA variant (odds ratio [OR] = 2.09; 95% confidence interval [CI] 1.19-3.67) and MTRR 66GG variant (OR = 2.15; 95% CI 1.06-4.39) but reduced by the MTHFR 677TT variant (OR = 0.47; 95% CI 0.25-0.88), ABCG2 421GT variant (OR = 0.62; 95% CI 0.41-0.96), and ABCG2 421GT + TT variant (OR = 0.60; 95% CI 0.40-0.90). The increase in risk of adult ALL with the RFC1 80AA associated with the MTRR 66GG variant was even more significant (OR = 8.92; 95% CI 1.97-40.42). Furthermore, the MTHFR 677TT associated with the ABCG2 421GT + TT variant more significantly reduced the risk of adult ALL (OR = 0.32; 95% CI 0.12-0.85). However, all gene polymorphisms tested in this study failed to affect the pediatric ALL risk. Our study clearly demonstrates that polymorphisms in folate-related genes only modulate the susceptibility to adult ALL, but not to pediatric ALL, in Han Chinese.

da Silva LM, Galbiatti AL, Ruiz MT, et al.
MTHFD1 G1958A, BHMT G742A, TC2 C776G and TC2 A67G polymorphisms and head and neck squamous cell carcinoma risk.
Mol Biol Rep. 2012; 39(2):887-93 [PubMed] Related Publications
Alterations in folate metabolism may contribute to the process of carcinogenesis by influencing DNA methylation and genomic stability. Polymorphisms in genes encoding enzymes involved in this pathway may alter enzyme activity and consequently interfere in concentrations of homocysteine and S-adenosylmethionine that are important for DNA synthesis and cellular methylation reactions. The objectives were to investigate MTHFD1 G1958A, BHMT G742A, TC2 C776G and TC2 A67G polymorphisms involved in folate metabolism on head and neck cancer risk and the association between these polymorphisms with risk factors. Polymorphisms were investigated in 762 individuals (272 patients and 490 controls) by polymerase chain reaction-restriction fragment length polymorphism (PCR-RFLP) and Real Time-PCR. Chi-square and Multiple logistic regression were used for the statistical analysis. Multiple logistic regression showed that tobacco and male gender were predictors for the disease (P < 0.05). Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium showed that the genotypic distributions were in equilibrium for both groups in all polymorphisms studied. The BHMT 742GA or AA genotypes associated with tobacco consumption (P = 0.016) increase the risk for head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC). The present study suggests that BHMT 742GA polymorphism associated to tobacco modulate HNSCC risk. However, further investigation of gene-gene interactions in folate metabolism and studies in different populations are needed to investigate polymorphisms and HNSCC risk.

Mostowska A, Myka M, Lianeri M, et al.
Folate and choline metabolism gene variants and development of uterine cervical carcinoma.
Clin Biochem. 2011; 44(8-9):596-600 [PubMed] Related Publications
OBJECTIVE: It has been reported that aberrant DNA methylation can be associated with HPV infection and cervical tumorigenesis. The aim of this study was to evaluate the possibility that polymorphic variants of genes that may affect DNA methylation status are associated with the risk of cervical cancer in the Polish population.
DESIGN AND METHOD: Employing PCR-RFLPs and HRM analyses, we examined the prevalence of BHMT Arg239Gln (rs3733890), MTR Asp919Gly (rs1805087), MTHFR Ala222Val (rs1801133), MTHFD1 Arg653Gln (rs2236225) and MTRR Ile22Met (rs1801394) genotypes and alleles in patients with advanced cervical cancer (n=124) and controls (n=168).
RESULTS: The odds ratio (OR) for BHMT Gln/Gln genotype was 0.433 (95% CI=0.1780-1.054; p=0.0602). The OR for patients having the BHMT Arg/Gln or Gln/Gln genotypes was 0.579 (95% CI=0.3622-0.924; p=0.0216). We also observed a significantly higher frequency of the BHMT 239Gln allele in controls than in patients, p=0.0165. The genotype and allele frequencies of the MTR Asp919Gly, MTHFR Ala222Val, MTHFD1 Arg653Gln and MTRR Ile22Met gene variants did not display statistical differences between patients with cervical cancer and controls. We also did not find a significant association between the distribution of any genotypes or alleles and cancer characteristics.
CONCLUSION: Our results might suggest the protective role of the BHMT 239Gln variant in cervical cancer incidence.

Harlid S, Ivarsson MI, Butt S, et al.
A candidate CpG SNP approach identifies a breast cancer associated ESR1-SNP.
Int J Cancer. 2011; 129(7):1689-98 [PubMed] Related Publications
Altered DNA methylation is often seen in malignant cells, potentially contributing to carcinogenesis by suppressing gene expression. We hypothesized that heritable methylation potential might be a risk factor for breast cancer and evaluated possible association with breast cancer for single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) either involving CpG sequences in extended 5'-regulatory regions of candidate genes (ESR1, ESR2, PGR, and SHBG) or CpG and missense coding SNPs in genes involved in methylation (MBD1, MECP2, DNMT1, MGMT, MTHFR, MTR, MTRR, MTHFD1, MTHFD2, BHMT, DCTD, and SLC19A1). Genome-wide searches for genetic risk factors for breast cancers have in general not investigated these SNPs, because of low minor allele frequency or weak haplotype associations. Genotyping was performed using Mass spectrometry-Maldi-Tof in a screening panel of 538 cases and 1,067 controls. Potential association to breast cancer was identified for 15 SNPs and one of these SNPs (rs7766585 in ESR1) was found to associate strongly with breast cancer, OR 1.30 (95% CI 1.17-1.45; p-value 2.1 × 10(-6)), when tested in a verification panel consisting of 3,211 unique breast cancer cases and 4,223 unique controls from five European biobank cohorts. In conclusion, a candidate gene search strategy focusing on methylation-related SNPs did identify a SNP that associated with breast cancer at high significance.

Weiner AS, Beresina OV, Voronina EN, et al.
Polymorphisms in folate-metabolizing genes and risk of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma.
Leuk Res. 2011; 35(4):508-15 [PubMed] Related Publications
We investigated the role of single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in the folate-metabolizing genes MTHFR, MTR, MTRR, MTHFD, CBS and SHMT in regulating genetic susceptibility to Non-Hodgkin's lymphoma (NHL). We determined the allele and genotype frequencies in the case group (146 patients with NHL) and the control group (540 blood donors). A significant association with NHL was observed only for MTHFD1 G1958A (allele G OR=1.382, P=0.05; genotype GA OR=2.316, P=0.01; genotype GG OR=2.153, P=0.03). After additional stratification of case and control groups according to sex and tumor type association of MTHFD1 G1958A with NHL was observed only in high-grade NHL subgroup (allele G OR=1.664, P=0.01) and in women subgroup (allele G OR=2.043, P=0.009). Meta-analysis for SNPs in the MTHFR, MTR, MTRR and SHMT revealed a reducing effect of the MTR 2756G allele on the risk of NHL (OR=0.902; 95% CI 0.821-0.991, P=0.03).

Chan JY, Ugrasena DG, Lum DW, et al.
Xenobiotic and folate pathway gene polymorphisms and risk of childhood acute lymphoblastic leukaemia in Javanese children.
Hematol Oncol. 2011; 29(3):116-23 [PubMed] Related Publications
Xenobiotic and folate metabolic pathways are important for the maintenance of genetic stability and may influence susceptibility to the development of childhood acute lymphoblastic leukaemia (ALL). In this study, we investigated 10 polymorphisms in 6 genes (GSTM1-present/null, GSTT1-present/null, GSTP1 1578A > G, NQO1 609C > T, MTHFR 677C > T, MTHFR 1298A > C, MTHFD1 1958G > A, 3'-TYMS 1494 6bp-deletion/insertion, 5'-TYMS 28bp-tandem repeats, and SLC19A1 80G > A) in a cohort of 185 Javanese children with ALL and 177 healthy controls. In ALL patients, none of the polymorphisms demonstrated a statistically significant association with ALL after correcting for multiple comparisons. Gender-stratified analysis showed that in girls, GSTT1-null genotype was associated with increased ALL risk (OR = 2.20; p = 0.027), while GSTP1 1578AG genotype was associated with reduced risk (OR = 0.43; p = 0.031). Strong linkage disequilibrium between the MTHFR 677C > T and 1298A > C polymorphisms was observed (D' = 1.0; r(2) = 0.072). The haplotypes 677C-1298C and 677T-1298A were associated with a reduced risk of ALL (OR = 0.68 and 0.64, respectively; gender-adjusted global p = 0.028). Classification and regression tree (CART) analysis was employed to identify potential high-order gene-gene interactions and cluster subjects into susceptibility groups. SLC19A1 80G > A emerged as the predominant polymorphism associated with risk of ALL. Individuals simultaneously carrying MTHFR 1298AA, 3'-TYMS 6bp deletion(s) and SLC19A1 80A-allele(s) were at higher disease risk (OR = 2.21; p < 0.001). On the contrary, simultaneous possession of MTHFR 1298CC, 3'-TYMS 6bp homozygosity and SLC19A1 80A-allele(s) conferred lower risk (OR = 0.25; p = 0.004). Carriage of NQO1 609C-allele amongst SLC19A1 80GG genotype was associated with lower risk (OR = 0.47; p = 0.003). In conclusion, our study has demonstrated the importance of gender and gene-gene interaction within the xenobiotic and folate pathways in modulating childhood ALL susceptibility.

Jin G, Huang J, Hu Z, et al.
Genetic variants in one-carbon metabolism-related genes contribute to NSCLC prognosis in a Chinese population.
Cancer. 2010; 116(24):5700-9 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND: One-carbon metabolism plays a critical role in DNA methylation and DNA synthesis. Variants of genes involved in one-carbon metabolism may result in aberrant methylation and/or DNA synthesis inhibition, and ultimately modulate the initiation and progression of tumors. In this study, the authors hypothesized that polymorphisms in one-carbon metabolism-related genes may contribute to the prognosis of nonsmall cell lung cancer (NSCLC).
METHODS: The authors screened 57 potentially functional single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) from 11 candidate genes involved in one-carbon metabolism and genotyped them in a cohort of 568 NSCLC patients by using Illumina Golden Gate platform. The Kaplan-Meier method with log-rank test and Cox proportional hazards model were used for survival analyses.
RESULTS: Variant alleles were significantly associated with favorable survivals of NSCLC for MTR rs3768160 A>G (allelic hazards ratio [HR], 0.78; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.62-0.98), MTRR rs2966952 G>A (allelic HR, 0.84; 95% CI, 0.71-0.99) and DHFR rs1650697 G>A (allelic HR, 0.83; 95% CI, 0.70-0.99) and with unfavorable prognosis for MTHFD1 rs1950902 G>A with borderline significance (allelic HR, 1.18; 95% CI, 0.99-1.40). In addition, the combined genotypes of these four SNPs showed a locus-dosage effect on NSCLC survival (P(trend) = 6.9 × 10(-5) ). In the final multivariate Cox regression model, combined genotypes based on 3 categories may be an independent prognostic factor for NSCLC with adjusted trend HR of 0.78 (95% CI, 0.66-0.92).
CONCLUSION: Genetic variants in one-carbon metabolism pathway may be candidate biomarkers for NSCLC prognosis.

Kelemen LE, Goodman MT, McGuire V, et al.
Genetic variation in TYMS in the one-carbon transfer pathway is associated with ovarian carcinoma types in the Ovarian Cancer Association Consortium.
Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev. 2010; 19(7):1822-30 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: We previously reported the risks of ovarian carcinoma for common polymorphisms in one-carbon transfer genes. We sought to replicate associations for DPYD rs1801265, DNMT3A rs13420827, MTHFD1 rs1950902, MTHFS rs17284990, and TYMS rs495139 with risk of ovarian carcinoma overall and to use the large sample of assembled cases to investigate associations by histologic type.
METHODS: Associations were evaluated in the Ovarian Cancer Association Consortium, including 16 studies of 5,593 epithelial ovarian carcinoma cases and 9,962 controls of white non-Hispanic origin. Odds ratios (OR) and 95% confidence intervals (CI) were adjusted for age and study site.
RESULTS: The five polymorphisms were not associated with ovarian carcinoma overall (P(trend) > 0.13); however, associations for the minor allele at TYMS rs495139 were observed for carcinomas of mucinous type (OR, 1.19; 95% CI, 1.03-1.39; P = 0.02), clear cell type (OR, 0.86; 95% CI, 0.75-0.99; P = 0.04), and endometrioid type (OR, 0.90; 95% CI, 0.81-0.99; P = 0.04; P(heterogeneity) = 0.001). Restriction to low-grade mucinous carcinomas further strengthened the association for the mucinous type (OR, 1.32; 95% CI, 1.07-1.62; P = 0.01). TYMS rs495139 was not associated with serous type (OR, 1.06; 95% CI, 1.00-1.13; P = 0.05).
CONCLUSIONS: TYMS rs495139 may be associated with a differential risk of ovarian carcinoma types, indicating the importance of accurate histopathologic classification.
IMPACT: Biomarkers that distinguish ovarian carcinoma types are few, and TYMS rs495139 may provide a novel clue to type etiology.

Rasti M, Tavasoli P, Monabati A, Entezam M
Association between HIC1 and RASSF1A promoter hypermethylation with MTHFD1 G1958A polymorphism and clinicopathological features of breast cancer in Iranian patients.
Iran Biomed J. 2009; 13(4):199-206 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Ras-associated domain family 1 (RASSF1A) and hypermethylated in cancer (HIC1) genes are methylated more frequently in breast cancer. Genetic factors that alter the DNA methylation levels in normal and tumor tissues could therefore influence the susceptibility to this tumor phenotype. We determined the frequency of aberrant methylation of HIC1 and RASSF1A gene promoters and their association with methylene tetrahydrofolate dehydrogenase (MTHFD1) G1958A polymorphism and major clinical and pathological features of breast cancer in Iranian women.
METHODS: DNA was extracted from 81 primary breast tumors and 100 control blood samples. Gene promoter methylation was analyzed by methylation-specific polymerase chain reaction.
RESULTS: Eighty four percent of the breast cancer samples showed total methylation in at least one of two tested loci. We detected HIC1 hypermethylation in 79% of invasive and metastasis tumors and RASSF1A gene hypermethylation in 51% of them. We found no association between HIC1 and RASSF1A gene hypermethylation and MTHFD1 G1958A polymorphism, but a significant correlation between methylation of HIC1 and RASSF1A promoters was indicated (r = 0.24, P = 0.02). There was a combination between hypermethylation of HIC1 locus and nodal involvement in the studied population (p=0.03). We found a significant association between total methylation and nodal involvement (P = 0.01) as well as tumor size more than 2 cm in all cases (P = 0.02).
CONCLUSION: Methylation of HIC1 and RASSF1A promoters can be used as epigenetic markers to detect the malignant progression of breast carcinoma in Iranian women patients.

Collin SM, Metcalfe C, Zuccolo L, et al.
Association of folate-pathway gene polymorphisms with the risk of prostate cancer: a population-based nested case-control study, systematic review, and meta-analysis.
Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev. 2009; 18(9):2528-39 [PubMed] Related Publications
Folate-pathway gene polymorphisms have been implicated in several cancers and investigated inconclusively in relation to prostate cancer. We conducted a systematic review, which identified nine case-control studies (eight included, one excluded). We also included data from four genome-wide association studies and from a case-control study nested within the UK population-based Prostate Testing for Cancer and Treatment study. We investigated by meta-analysis the effects of eight polymorphisms: MTHFR C677T (rs1801133; 12 studies; 10,745 cases; 40,158 controls), MTHFR A1298C (rs1801131; 5 studies; 3,176 cases; 4,829 controls), MTR A2756G (rs1805087; 8 studies; 7,810 cases; 37,543 controls), MTRR A66G (rs1801394; 4 studies; 3,032 cases; 4,515 controls), MTHFD1 G1958A (rs2236225; 6 studies; 7,493 cases; 36,941 controls), SLC19A1/RFC1 G80A (rs1051266; 4 studies; 6,222 cases; 35,821 controls), SHMT1 C1420T (rs1979277; 2 studies; 2,689 cases; 4,110 controls), and FOLH1 T1561C (rs202676; 5 studies; 6,314 cases; 35,190 controls). The majority (10 of 13) of eligible studies had 100% Caucasian subjects; only one study had <90% Caucasian subjects. We found weak evidence of dominant effects of two alleles: MTR 2756A>G [random effects pooled odds ratio, 1.06 (1.00-1.12); P = 0.06 (P = 0.59 for heterogeneity across studies)] and SHMT1 1420C>T [random effects pooled odds ratio, 1.11 (1.00-1.22); P = 0.05 (P = 0.38 for heterogeneity across studies)]. We found no effect of MTHFR 677C>T or any of the other alleles in dominant, recessive or additive models, or in comparing a/a versus A/A homozygous. Neither did we find any difference in effects on advanced or localized cancers. Our meta-analysis suggests that known common folate-pathway single nucleotide polymorphisms do not have significant effects on susceptibility to prostate cancer.

Kruszyna Ł, Lianeri M, Rydzanicz M, et al.
Polymorphic variants of folate metabolism genes and the risk of laryngeal cancer.
Mol Biol Rep. 2010; 37(1):241-7 [PubMed] Related Publications
Carcinogenesis may result from abnormal methylation of cancer-related genes regulatory sequence. Though, the polymorphic variants of genes encoding enzymes of folate and methionine metabolism may have an effect on DNA methylation. Using PCR-RFLPs, we examined the polymorphism distribution of genes encoding methionine synthase (MTR); 5,10-methylenetetrahydrofolate dehydrogenase, 5,10-methenyltetrahydrofolate cyclohydrolase and 10-formyltetrahydrofolate synthetase (MTHFD1); and methylenetetrahydrofolate reductase (MTHFR) in patients with larynx cancer (n = 131) and controls (n = 250). Patients with MTR 2756AG or GG genotypes displayed a 1.856 -fold increased risk of larynx cancer (95% CI = 1.1860-2.903, P = 0.0076). However, we did not observe an increased risk for the homozygous GG genotype OR = 1.960 (95% CI = 0.6722-5.713, P = 0.2535). Moreover, we did not observe statistical differences in distribution of MTHFR 677C>T, 1298A>C and MTHFD1 1958G>A allele and genotype frequencies in patients and controls. Our findings confirm the significance of the role of the methyl cycle in etiopathogenesis of laryngeal cancer.

Charasson V, Hillaire-Buys D, Solassol I, et al.
Involvement of gene polymorphisms of the folate pathway enzymes in gene expression and anticancer drug sensitivity using the NCI-60 panel as a model.
Eur J Cancer. 2009; 45(13):2391-401 [PubMed] Related Publications
Folate, a vitamin of the B group involved in one-carbon group metabolism, plays an important role in DNA synthesis and methylation. Several polymorphisms in the genes involved in folate uptake and biotransformations have been shown to be associated to the risk of cancer and to anticancer drug response. We studied common polymorphisms in MTHFR (N(5,10)-methylene-tetrahydrofolate reductase), MTHFD1 (N(5,10)-methylene-tetrahydrofolate dehydrogenase), MTR (methionine synthetase) and SLC19A1 (reduced folate carrier) in the panel of 60 human tumour cell lines established by the NCI for anticancer drug screening and we tentatively associated these polymorphisms with gene expression and drug cytotoxicity as extracted from the public database of the Developmental Therapeutic Programme. We observed a consistent and highly significant association between the presence of the variant C allele of the A>C1298 polymorphism of MTHFR and the sensitivity to many anticancer drugs belonging to the classes of antifolates, antimetabolites, alkylating agents and, to a lesser extent, topoisomerase inhibitors. In contrast, the T variant allele of the C>T677 variation of MTHFR was rather associated to lower sensitivity of the cell lines towards anticancer drugs (alkylating agents, antifolates and antimetabolites) but with much lower effects than the A>C1298 variation. The polymorphisms of the other genes studied were not associated with differences in anticancer drug sensitivity, but the expression of the SLC19A1 gene was significantly correlated with the sensitivity to several drugs (antifolates, thiopurines, nitrosoureas, and DACH-platinum drugs). We concluded that the NCI-60 panel may constitute a good starting point for implementing clinical studies aimed at discovering and validating predictive genetic markers of drug efficacy and/or toxicity.

de Jonge R, Tissing WJ, Hooijberg JH, et al.
Polymorphisms in folate-related genes and risk of pediatric acute lymphoblastic leukemia.
Blood. 2009; 113(10):2284-9 [PubMed] Related Publications
Polymorphisms in folate pathway genes may influence the susceptibility to acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL). DNA was isolated from 245 pediatric ALL patients (cases) and from 500 blood bank donors (controls). Polymorphisms in methylene-tetrahydrofolate reductase (MTHFR 677C>T, 1298A>C), methionine synthase (MTR 2756A>G), methionine synthase reductase (MTRR 66A>G), methylenetetrahydrofolate dehydrogenase (MTHFD1 1958G>A), nicotinamide N-methyltransferase (NNMT IVS -151C>T), serine hydroxymethyl transferase (SHMT1 1420C>T), thymidylate synthase (TS 2R3R), and the reduced folate carrier (RFC1 80G>A) were detected. In ALL patients, an increased occurrence was observed of the RFC1 80AA variant (odds ratio [OR] = 2.1; 95% confidence interval [CI] = 1.3-3.2; P = .002) and the RFC1 80A allele (OR = 1.5; 95% CI, 1.1-2.1; P = .02). Likewise, the NNMT IVS -151TT genotype showed a 2.2-fold increased ALL risk (OR = 2.2; 95% CI, 1.1-4.6; P = .04). A 1.4-fold reduction in ALL risk was observed for (heterozygous or homozygous) carriers of the TS 2R allele and the MTHFR 677T allele (OR = 0.7; 95% CI, 0.5-1.0; P < .05). Furthermore, interactions between NNMT and MTHFR 677C>T and RFC1 were observed. NNMT IVS -151CC/MTHFR 677CT + TT patients exhibited a 2-fold reduction in ALL risk whereas RFC1 80AA/NNMT IVS -151CT + TT subjects had a 4.2-fold increase in ALL risk (P = .001). For the first time, we associate the RFC1 80G>A and NNMT IVS -151C>T variants to an increased ALL susceptibility.

Liu H, Jin G, Wang H, et al.
Association of polymorphisms in one-carbon metabolizing genes and lung cancer risk: a case-control study in Chinese population.
Lung Cancer. 2008; 61(1):21-9 [PubMed] Related Publications
One-carbon metabolism facilitates the cross-talk between genetic and epigenetic processes, making it a good candidate for studying the risk of lung cancer. To investigate the role of common variants of one-carbon metabolizing genes on lung cancer risk, total 25 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in 7 genes were genotyped among 500 incident lung cancer patients and 517 cancer-free controls. An increased risk was suggested for the variant allele carriers of MTHFR rs17037396 [odds ratio (OR)=1.39, 95% confidence interval (CI): 1.00-1.94] and rs3753584 (OR=1.46, 95% CI: 1.03-2.08), compared with subjects with wild homozygote, respectively, and the risk was more pronounced among older individuals (>60 years). In contrast, a decreased risk was observed for TYMS rs2853742 variant allele carriers (OR=0.44, 95% CI: 0.19-0.99) and MTHFD rs2236225 variant allele carriers (OR=0.76, 95% CI: 0.59-0.99). Haplotype analysis revealed that MTHFR "ACCACC" haplotype may contribute to the risk of lung cancer (OR=1.49, 95% CI: 1.03-2.14, local test p value 0.032). A data mining method, multifactor dimensionality reduction (MDR), predicted a four-factor interaction model (rs1801133, rs4659731, rs2273029 and rs699517) with the lowest average prediction error (45.08%, p<0.001). These findings suggest that genetic variants in one-carbon metabolizing genes might modulate the risk of lung cancer. Validation of these findings in larger studies is needed.

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