Exome array analysis identifies GPR35 as a novel susceptibility gene for anthracycline-induced cardiotoxicity in childhood cancer

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Abstract

Objectives

Pediatric cancer survivors are a steadily growing population; however, chronic anthracycline-induced cardiotoxicity (AIC) is a serious long-term complication leading to considerable morbidity. We aimed to identify new genes and low-frequency variants influencing the susceptibility to AIC for pediatric cancer patients.

Patients and methods

We studied the association of variants on the Illumina HumanExome BeadChip array in 83 anthracycline-treated pediatric cancer patients. In addition to single-variant association tests, we carried out a gene-based analysis to investigate the combined effects of common and low-frequency variants to chronic AIC.

Results

Although no single-variant showed an association with chronic AIC that was statistically significant after correction for multiple testing, we identified a novel significant association for G protein-coupled receptor 35 (GPR35) by gene-based testing, a gene with potential roles in cardiac physiology and pathology (P=7.0×10−6), which remained statistically significant after correction for multiple testing (PFDR=0.03). The greatest contribution to this observed association was made by rs12468485, a missense variant (p.Thr253Met, c.758C>T, minor allele frequency=0.04), with the T allele associated with an increased risk of chronic AIC and more severe symptomatic cardiac manifestations at low anthracycline doses.

Conclusion

Using exome array data, we identified GPR35 as a novel susceptibility gene associated with chronic AIC in pediatric cancer patients.

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