Melbourne School of Population and Global Health - Research Publications

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    Mortality from cutaneous melanoma: evidence for contrasting trends between populations
    Severi, G ; Giles, GG ; Robertson, C ; Boyle, P ; Autier, P (NATURE PUBLISHING GROUP, 2000-06-01)
    In recent years several reports have been published concerning trends in melanoma mortality in different countries, some of which have indicated that rates are beginning to fall. Many of these reports, however, have been based on small populations and have used different forms of statistical analysis. Our objective was to analyse systematically to what degree the epidemic of melanoma mortality had evolved similarly in different populations and whether there were any divergent trends that might increase our understanding. Instead of using all available data, we focused on countries with a minimum time series of 30 years and a minimum of 100 deaths annually in at least one sex from melanoma. We first inspected sex-specific age-standardized mortality rates and then performed age-period-cohort modelling. We found that the increase in mortality observed after 1950 was more pronounced in the age group 60-79. Statistical modelling showed a general increase in mortality rates in generations born after the turn of the century. Downturns in mortality, essentially in women and starting with generations born just before World War II, were found in Australia (where the earliest decreases were noted), the Nordic countries and the USA. Small decreases in rates in more recent generations were found in the UK and Canada. However, in France, Italy and Czechoslovakia, mortality rates were seen to be still increasing in recent cohorts. Our analysis suggests that populations are at different places on the melanoma mortality epidemic curve. The three trend patterns we observed are in agreement with time differences between populations with respect to the promotion of sun protection and the surveillance of pigmented skin lesions.
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    Heterogeneity of breast cancer associations with five susceptibility loci by clinical and pathological characteristics
    Garcia-Closas, M ; Hall, P ; Nevanlinna, H ; Pooley, K ; Morrison, J ; Richesson, DA ; Bojesen, SE ; Nordestgaard, BG ; Axelsson, CK ; Arias, JI ; Milne, RL ; Ribas, G ; Gonzalez-Neira, A ; Benitez, J ; Zamora, P ; Brauch, H ; Justenhoven, C ; Hamann, U ; Ko, Y-D ; Bruening, T ; Haas, S ; Doerk, T ; Schuermann, P ; Hillemanns, P ; Bogdanova, N ; Bremer, M ; Karstens, JH ; Fagerholm, R ; Aaltonen, K ; Aittomaki, K ; Von Smitten, K ; Blomqvist, C ; Mannermaa, A ; Uusitupa, M ; Eskelinen, M ; Tengstrom, M ; Kosma, V-M ; Kataja, V ; Chenevix-Trench, G ; Spurdle, AB ; Beesley, J ; Chen, X ; Devilee, P ; Van Asperen, CJ ; Jacobi, CE ; Tollenaar, RAEM ; Huijts, PEA ; Klijn, JGM ; Chang-Claude, J ; Kropp, S ; Slanger, T ; Flesch-Janys, D ; Mutschelknauss, E ; Salazar, R ; Wang-Gohrke, S ; Couch, F ; Goode, EL ; Olson, JE ; Vachon, C ; Fredericksen, ZS ; Giles, GG ; Baglietto, L ; Severi, G ; Hopper, JL ; English, DR ; Southey, MC ; Haiman, CA ; Henderson, BE ; Kolonel, LN ; Le Marchand, L ; Stram, DO ; Hunter, DJ ; Hankinson, SE ; Cox, DG ; Tamimi, R ; Kraft, P ; Sherman, ME ; Chanock, SJ ; Lissowska, J ; Brinton, LA ; Peplonska, B ; Klijn, JGM ; Hooning, MJ ; Meijers-Heijboer, H ; Collee, JM ; Van den Ouweland, A ; Uitterlinden, AG ; Liu, J ; Lin, LY ; Yuqing, L ; Humphreys, K ; Czene, K ; Cox, A ; Balasubramanian, SP ; Cross, SS ; Reed, MWR ; Blows, F ; Driver, K ; Dunning, A ; Tyrer, J ; Ponder, BAJ ; Sangrajrang, S ; Brennan, P ; Mckay, J ; Odefrey, F ; Gabrieau, V ; Sigurdson, A ; Doody, M ; Struewing, JP ; Alexander, B ; Easton, DF ; Pharoah, PD ; Leal, SM (PUBLIC LIBRARY SCIENCE, 2008-04-01)
    A three-stage genome-wide association study recently identified single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in five loci (fibroblast growth receptor 2 (FGFR2), trinucleotide repeat containing 9 (TNRC9), mitogen-activated protein kinase 3 K1 (MAP3K1), 8q24, and lymphocyte-specific protein 1 (LSP1)) associated with breast cancer risk. We investigated whether the associations between these SNPs and breast cancer risk varied by clinically important tumor characteristics in up to 23,039 invasive breast cancer cases and 26,273 controls from 20 studies. We also evaluated their influence on overall survival in 13,527 cases from 13 studies. All participants were of European or Asian origin. rs2981582 in FGFR2 was more strongly related to ER-positive (per-allele OR (95%CI) = 1.31 (1.27-1.36)) than ER-negative (1.08 (1.03-1.14)) disease (P for heterogeneity = 10(-13)). This SNP was also more strongly related to PR-positive, low grade and node positive tumors (P = 10(-5), 10(-8), 0.013, respectively). The association for rs13281615 in 8q24 was stronger for ER-positive, PR-positive, and low grade tumors (P = 0.001, 0.011 and 10(-4), respectively). The differences in the associations between SNPs in FGFR2 and 8q24 and risk by ER and grade remained significant after permutation adjustment for multiple comparisons and after adjustment for other tumor characteristics. Three SNPs (rs2981582, rs3803662, and rs889312) showed weak but significant associations with ER-negative disease, the strongest association being for rs3803662 in TNRC9 (1.14 (1.09-1.21)). rs13281615 in 8q24 was associated with an improvement in survival after diagnosis (per-allele HR = 0.90 (0.83-0.97). The association was attenuated and non-significant after adjusting for known prognostic factors. Our findings show that common genetic variants influence the pathological subtype of breast cancer and provide further support for the hypothesis that ER-positive and ER-negative disease are biologically distinct. Understanding the etiologic heterogeneity of breast cancer may ultimately result in improvements in prevention, early detection, and treatment.
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    Is there a positive association between mammographic density and bone mineral density?
    Dite, GS ; Wark, JD ; Giles, GG ; English, DR ; McCredie, MRE ; Hopper, JL (BMC, 2006-01-01)
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    Cytomegalovirus, Epstein-Barr virus and risk of breast cancer before age 40 years: a case-control study
    Richardson, AK ; Cox, B ; McCredie, M ; Dite, GS ; Chang, JH ; Gertig, DM ; Southey, MC ; Giless, GG ; Hopper, JL (NATURE PUBLISHING GROUP, 2004-06-01)
    We investigated whether there is an association between cytomegalovirus (CMV) and Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) IgG levels and risk of breast cancer before age 40 years. CMV and EBV IgG levels were measured in stored plasma from 208 women with breast cancer and 169 controls who participated in the Australian Breast Cancer Family Study (ABCFS), a population-based case-control study. CMV and EBV IgG values were measured in units of optical density (OD). Cases and controls did not differ in seropositivity for CMV (59 and 57% respectively; P=0.8) or EBV (97 and 96% respectively; P=0.7). In seropositive women, mean IgG values were higher in cases than controls for CMV (1.20 vs 0.98 OD, P=0.005) but not for EBV (2.65 vs 2.57 OD, P=0.5). The adjusted odds ratios per OD unit were 1.46 (95% CI 1.06-2.03) for CMV IgG and 1.11 (0.93-1.33) for EBV IgG. The higher mean CMV IgG levels found in women with breast cancer could be the result of a more recent infection with CMV, and may mean that late exposure to CMV is a risk factor for breast cancer.
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    Risk factors for breast cancer in young women by oestrogen receptor and progesterone receptor status
    McCredie, MRE ; Dite, GS ; Southey, MC ; Venter, DJ ; Giles, GG ; Hopper, JL (NATURE PUBLISHING GROUP, 2003-11-03)
    We used data from 765 cases and 564 controls in the population-based Australian Breast Cancer Family Study to investigate whether, in women under the age of 40, the profile of risk factors differed between breast cancer subtypes defined by joint oestrogen and progesterone receptor status. As hypothesised, no significant differences were found.
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    No evidence for association of ataxia-telangiectasia mutated gene T2119C and C3161G amino acid substitution variants with risk of breast cancer
    Spurdle, AB ; Hopper, JL ; Chen, XQ ; McCredie, MRE ; Giles, GG ; Newman, B ; Chenevix-Trench, G ; Khanna, K (BMC, 2002-01-01)
    BACKGROUND: There is evidence that certain mutations in the double-strand break repair pathway ataxia-telangiectasia mutated gene act in a dominant-negative manner to increase the risk of breast cancer. There are also some reports to suggest that the amino acid substitution variants T2119C Ser707Pro and C3161G Pro1054Arg may be associated with breast cancer risk. We investigate the breast cancer risk associated with these two nonconservative amino acid substitution variants using a large Australian population-based case-control study. METHODS: The polymorphisms were genotyped in more than 1300 cases and 600 controls using 5' exonuclease assays. Case-control analyses and genotype distributions were compared by logistic regression. RESULTS: The 2119C variant was rare, occurring at frequencies of 1.4 and 1.3% in cases and controls, respectively (P = 0.8). There was no difference in genotype distribution between cases and controls (P = 0.8), and the TC genotype was not associated with increased risk of breast cancer (adjusted odds ratio = 1.08, 95% confidence interval = 0.59-1.97, P = 0.8). Similarly, the 3161G variant was no more common in cases than in controls (2.9% versus 2.2%, P = 0.2), there was no difference in genotype distribution between cases and controls (P = 0.1), and the CG genotype was not associated with an increased risk of breast cancer (adjusted odds ratio = 1.30, 95% confidence interval = 0.85-1.98, P = 0.2). This lack of evidence for an association persisted within groups defined by the family history of breast cancer or by age. CONCLUSION: The 2119C and 3161G amino acid substitution variants are not associated with moderate or high risks of breast cancer in Australian women.
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    The intronic G13964C variant in p53 is not a high-risk mutation in familial breast cancer in Australia
    Marsh, A ; Spurdle, AB ; Turner, BC ; Fereday, S ; Thorne, H ; Pupo, GM ; Mann, GJ ; Hopper, JL ; Sambrook, JF ; Chenevix-Trench, G (BIOMED CENTRAL LTD, 2001-01-01)
    BACKGROUND: Mutations in BRCA1 and BRCA2 account for approximately 50% of breast cancer families with more than four affected cases, whereas exonic mutations in p53, PTEN, CHK2 and ATM may account for a very small proportion. It was recently reported that an intronic variant of p53--G13964C--occurred in three out of 42 (7.1%) 'hereditary' breast cancer patients, but not in any of 171 'sporadic' breast cancer control individuals (P = 0.0003). If this relatively frequent occurrence of G13964C in familial breast cancer and absence in control individuals were confirmed, then this would suggest that the G13964C variant plays a role in breast cancer susceptibility. METHOD: We genotyped 71 familial breast cancer patients and 143 control individuals for the G13964C variant using polymerase chain reaction (PCR)-restriction fragment length polymorphism (RFLP) analysis. RESULTS: Three (4.2%; 95% confidence interval [CI] 0-8.9%) G13964C heterozygotes were identified. The variant was also identified in 5 out of 143 (3.5%; 95% CI 0.6-6.4%) control individuals without breast cancer or a family history of breast cancer, however, which is no different to the proportion found in familial cases (P = 0.9). CONCLUSION: The present study would have had 80% power to detect an odds ratio of 4.4, and we therefore conclude that the G13946C polymorphism is not a 'high-risk' mutation for familial breast cancer.
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    Reduced rates of primary joint replacement for osteoarthritis in Italian and Greek migrants to Australia: the Melbourne Collaborative Cohort Study
    Wang, Y ; Simpson, JA ; Wluka, A ; Urquhart, DM ; English, DR ; Giles, GG ; Graves, S ; Cicuttini, FM (BMC, 2009-01-01)
    INTRODUCTION: Racial and ethnic disparities in rates of total joint replacement have been described, but little work has been done in well-established migrant groups. The aim of this study was to compare the rates of primary joint replacement for osteoarthritis for Italian and Greek migrants to Australia and Australian-born individuals. METHODS: Eligible participants (n = 39,023) aged 27 to 75 years, born in Italy, Greece, Australia and the United Kingdom, were recruited for the Melbourne Collaborative Cohort Study between 1990 and 1994. Primary hip and knee replacement for osteoarthritis between 2001 and 2005 was determined by data linkage to the Australian Orthopaedic Association National Joint Replacement Registry. RESULTS: Participants born in Italy and Greece had a lower rate of primary joint replacement compared with those born in Australia (hazard ratio [HR] 0.32, 95% confidence interval [CI] 0.26 to 0.39, P < 0.001), independent of age, gender, body mass index, education level, and physical functioning. This lower rate was observed for joint replacements performed in private hospitals (HR 0.17, 95% CI 0.13 to 0.23), but not for joint replacements performed in public hospitals (HR 0.96, 95% CI 0.72 to 1.29). CONCLUSIONS: People born in Italy and Greece had a lower rate of primary joint replacement for osteoarthritis in this cohort study compared with Australian-born people, which could not simply be explained by factors such as education level, physical functioning, and weight. Although differential access to health care found in the population may explain the different rates of joint replacement, it may be that social factors and preferences regarding treatment or different rates of progression to end-stage osteoarthritis in this population are important to ethnic disparity.
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    Relationship between body adiposity measures and risk of primary knee and hip replacement for osteoarthritis: a prospective cohort study
    Wang, Y ; Simpson, JA ; Wluka, A ; Teichtahl, AJ ; English, DR ; Giles, GG ; Graves, S ; Cicuttini, FM (BMC, 2009-01-01)
    INTRODUCTION: Total joint replacement is considered a surrogate measure for symptomatic end-stage osteoarthritis. It is unknown whether the adipose mass and the distribution of adipose mass are associated with the risk of primary knee and hip replacement for osteoarthritis. The aim of the present investigation was to examine this in a cohort study. METHODS: A total of 39,023 healthy volunteers from Melbourne, Australia were recruited for a prospective cohort study during 1990 to 1994. Their body mass index, waist circumference, and waist-to-hip ratio were obtained from direct anthropometric measurements. The fat mass and percentage fat were estimated from bioelectrical impedance analysis. Primary knee and hip replacements for osteoarthritis between 1 January 2001 and 31 December 2005 were determined by data linkage to the Australian Orthopaedic Association National Joint Replacement Registry. Cox proportional hazards regression models were used to estimate the hazard ratios (HRs) for primary joint replacement associated with each adiposity measure. RESULTS: Comparing the fourth quartile with the first, there was a threefold to fourfold increased risk of primary joint replacement associated with body weight (HR = 3.44, 95% confidence interval (CI) = 2.83 to 4.18), body mass index (HR = 3.44, 95% CI = 2.80 to 4.22), fat mass (HR = 3.51, 95% CI = 2.87 to 4.30), and percentage fat (HR = 2.99, 95% CI = 2.46 to 3.63). The waist circumference (HR = 2.77, 95% CI = 2.26 to 3.39) and waist-to-hip ratio (HR = 1.46, 95% CI = 1.21 to 1.76) were less strongly associated with the risk. Except for the waist-to-hip ratio, which was not significantly associated with hip replacement risk, all adiposity measures were associated with the risk of both knee and hip joint replacement, and were significantly stronger risk factors for knee. CONCLUSIONS: Risk of primary knee and hip joint replacement for osteoarthritis relates to both adipose mass and central adiposity. This relationship suggests both biomechanical and metabolic mechanisms associated with adiposity contribute to the risk of joint replacement, with stronger evidence at the knee rather than the hip.
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    Vastus medialis cross-sectional area is positively associated with patella cartilage and bone volumes in a pain-free community-based population
    Berry, PA ; Teichtahl, AJ ; Galevska-Dimitrovska, A ; Hanna, FS ; Wluka, A ; Wang, Y ; Urquhart, DM ; English, DR ; Giles, GG ; Cicuttini, FM (BMC, 2008-01-01)
    INTRODUCTION: Although vastus medialis and lateralis are important determinants of patellofemoral joint function, their relationship with patellofemoral joint structure is unknown. The aim of this study was to examine potential determinants of vastus medialis and lateralis cross-sectional areas and the relationship between the cross-sectional area and patella cartilage and bone volumes. METHODS: Two hundred ninety-seven healthy adult subjects had magnetic resonance imaging of their dominant knee. Vastus medialis and lateralis cross-sectional areas were measured 37.5 mm superior to the quadriceps tendon insertion at the proximal pole of the patella. Patella cartilage and bone volumes were measured from these images. Demographic data and participation in vigorous physical activity were assessed by questionnaire. RESULTS: The determinants of increased vastus medialis and lateralis cross-sectional areas were older age (P