Scientists at the Institute of Cancer Research, in Sutton, England, have found that a certain variation in a DNA repair gene is associated with an increased risk of developing a type of brain cancer called meningioma.
Meningioma patients' relatives have an increased risk of developing the cancer, but exposure to radiation also increases one's risk for the disease.
To determine whether certain variants in DNA repair genes increased the risk of developing meningioma, Richard Houlston, Ph.D., and colleagues from the Institute analysed single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in 136 DNA repair genes for their association with meningioma risk.
They found that SNP known as rs4968451, which is in a breast cancer susceptibility gene, was linked to an increased risk of meningioma.
The researchers said that almost 30 percent of Europeans carry this genetic variant, which could indicate the substantial contribution of the variant in the development of meningioma.
Meningioma is an uncommon brain tumor that occurs in the meninges, the membranes that cover the brain and spinal cord.