Novel genetic variants in genes of the Fc gamma receptor-mediated phagocytosis pathway predict non-small cell lung cancer survival.


Background:Both antibody-dependent cellular cytotoxicity and phagocytosis activate innate immunity, and the Fc gamma receptor (FCGR)-mediated phagocytosis is an integral part of the process. We assessed associations between single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in FCGR-related genes and survival of patients with non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). Methods:We evaluated associations between 24,734 (SNPs) in 97 FCGR-related genes and survival of 1,185 patients with NSCLC using a published genome-wide association study (GWAS) dataset from the Prostate, Lung, Colorectal and Ovarian (PLCO) Cancer Screening Trial and validated the results in another independent dataset of 894 NSCLC patients. Results:In the single-locus analysis with Bayesian false discovery probability (BFDP) for multiple testing correction, we found 1,084 SNPs to be significantly associated overall survival (OS) (P<0.050 and BFDP ≤0.80), of which two independent SNPs (PLCG2 rs9673682 T>G and PLPP1 rs115613985 T>A) were further validated in another GWAS dataset of 894 patients from the Harvard Lung Cancer Susceptibility (HLCS) Study, with combined allelic hazards ratios for OS of 0.87 [95% confidence interval (CI): 0.81-0.94 and P=5.90×10-4] and 1.18 (95% CI: 1.08-1.29 and 1.32×10-4, respectively). Expression quantitative trait loci analysis showed that the rs9673682 G allele was significantly correlated with increased mRNA expression levels of PLCG2 in 373 transformed lymphoblastoid cell-lines (P=7.20×10-5). Additional evidence from differential expression analysis further supported a tumor-suppressive effect of PLCG2 on OS of patients with lung cancer, with lower mRNA expression levels in both lung squamous carcinoma and adenocarcinoma than in adjacent normal tissues. Conclusions:Genetic variants in PLCG2 of the FCGR-mediated phagocytosis pathway may be promising predictors of NSCLC survival, possibly through modulating gene expression, but additional investigation of the molecular mechanisms of PLPP1 rs115613985 is warranted.





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Publication Info

Qian, Danwen, Hongliang Liu, Lingling Zhao, Xiaomeng Wang, Sheng Luo, Patricia G Moorman, Edward F Patz, Li Su, et al. (2020). Novel genetic variants in genes of the Fc gamma receptor-mediated phagocytosis pathway predict non-small cell lung cancer survival. Translational lung cancer research, 9(3). pp. 575–586. 10.21037/tlcr-19-318 Retrieved from

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Sheng Luo

Professor of Biostatistics & Bioinformatics

Patricia Gripka Moorman

Professor Emeritus in Family Medicine and Community Health

Dr. Moorman's research focuses on the epidemiology of women's health issues. Her work includes research on ovarian cancer, breast cancer and hysterectomy. Areas of particular interest include disparities in cancer risk factors and outcomes and the effects of hysterectomy on ovarian function.  As part of the Duke Evidence Synthesis group, she has also been involved in systematic reviews and meta-analyses related to ovarian cancer, breast cancer and infertility.


Edward F. Patz

James and Alice Chen Distinguished Professor of Radiology

There are numerous ongoing clinical studies primarily focused on the early detection of cancer.

The basic science investigations in our laboratory concentration on three fundamental translational areas,

1) Development of molecular imaging probes - We have used several different approaches to develop novel imaging probes that characterize and phenotype tumors.

2) Discovery of novel lung cancer biomarkers - We explored the use of proteomics, autoantibodies, and genomics to discover blood and tissue biomarkers for early cancer detection and phenotyping of cancer.

3) Host response to cancer - We study the native immune response to tumors as this may provide cues to relevant diagnostic and therapeutic targets. Most recently we have focused on intratumoral lymphocytes and their specific tumor antigens.



Qingyi Wei

Professor in Population Health Sciences

Qingyi Wei, MD, PhD, Professor in the Department of Medicine, is Associate Director for Cancer Control and Population Sciences, Co-leader of CCPS and Co-leader of Epidemiology and Population Genomics (Focus Area 1). He is a professor of Medicine and an internationally recognized epidemiologist focused on the molecular and genetic epidemiology of head and neck cancers, lung cancer, and melanoma. His research focuses on biomarkers and genetic determinants for the DNA repair deficient phenotype and variations in cell death. He is Editor-in-Chief of the open access journal "Cancer Medicine" and Associate Editor-in-Chief of the International Journal of Molecular Epidemiology and Genetics.

Area of Expertise: Epidemiology

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