• melanoma;
  • cancer;
  • genetics;
  • DNA repair;
  • association;
  • pathway;
  • CMM;
  • family


Cutaneous malignant melanoma (CMM) is an etiologically heterogeneous disease with genetic, environmental (sun exposure) and host (pigmentation/nevi) factors and their interactions contributing to risk. Genetic variants in DNA repair genes may be particularly important since their altered function in response to sun exposure-related DNA damage maybe related to risk for CMM. However, systematic evaluations of genetic variants in DNA repair genes are limited, particularly in high-risk families. We comprehensively analyzed DNA repair gene polymorphisms and CMM risk in melanoma-prone families with/without CDKN2A mutations. A total of 586 individuals (183 CMM) from 53 families (23 CDKN2A (+), 30 CDKN2A (−)) were genotyped for 2964 tagSNPs in 131 DNA repair genes. Conditional logistic regression, conditioning on families, was used to estimate trend p-values, odds ratios and 95% confidence intervals for the association between CMM and each SNP separately, adjusted for age and sex. p-Values for SNPs in the same gene were combined to yield gene specific p-values. Two genes, POLN and PRKDC, were significantly associated with melanoma after Bonferroni correction for multiple testing (p = 0.0003 and 0.00035, respectively). DCLRE1B showed suggestive association (p = 0.0006). 28 ∼ 56% of genotyped SNPs in these genes had single SNP p < 0.05. The most significant SNPs in POLN and PRKDC had similar effects in CDKN2A (+) and CDKN2A (−) families. Our finding suggests that polymorphisms in DNA repair genes, POLN and PRKDC, were associated with increased melanoma risk in melanoma families with and without CDKN2A mutations.