OX40L is an important costimulatory molecule that plays a crucial role in the regulation of T-cell-mediated immunity. The interaction of OX40-OX40L is involved in the pathogenesis of multiple autoimmune and inflammatory diseases such as systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE), carotid artery disease and cancer. The genetic variants of OX40L can increase the risk of SLE, atherosclerosis, systemic sclerosis and show gender-specific effects in some studies. Accordingly, we performed a case-control study including 557 breast cancer patients and 580 age- and sex-matched healthy controls to investigate whether single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in the OX40L gene are associated with sporadic breast cancer susceptibility and progression in Chinese Han women. Seven SNPs of OX40L (rs6661173, rs1234313, rs3850641, rs1234315, rs12039904, rs844648 and rs10912580) were genotyped with the method of polymerase chain reaction-restriction fragment length polymorphism (PCR-RFLP). The results indicated that rs3850641G allele could increase the susceptibility to breast cancer (P = 0.009662), even in the validation study (P = 0.0001515). A significant association between rs3850641 and breast cancer risk was observed under the additive model and dominant model (P = 0.01042 and 0.01942, respectively). The haplotype analysis showed that haplotype Ars844648Ars10912580 was significantly associated with breast cancer, even after 10,000 permutations for haplotypes in block only (P = 0.0003). In clinicopathologic features analysis, the association between rs1234315 and C-erbB2 status was significant (P = 0.02541). Our data primarily indicates that rs3850641 of OX40L gene contributes to sporadic breast carcinogenesis in a northeast Chinese Han population.
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