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Intron 3 of the ARID5B gene: a hot spot for acute lymphoblastic leukemia susceptibility

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Single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in AT-rich interactive domain 5B (ARID5B) have been associated with risk for pediatric acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL). After reviewing previous studies, we realized that the most significant associations were restricted to intron 3, but the mechanism(s) by which those SNPs affect ALL risk remain to be elucidated. Therefore, the aim of this study was to analyze the association between genetic variants of the intron 3 region of ARID5B and the incidence of B-ALL in a Spanish population. We also aimed to find a functional explanation for the association, searching for copy number variations (CNVs), and changes in ARID5B expression associated with the genotypes of the SNPs.


We analyzed 10 SNPs in intron 3 of ARID5B in a Spanish population of 219 B-ALL patients and 397 unrelated controls with the Taqman Open Array platform. CNVs were analyzed in 23 patients and 17 controls using the Cytogenetics Whole-genome 2.7 M platform. Expression of ARID5B transcript 1 was quantified by qPCR and related to SNPs genotype in seven ALL cell lines.


Association between intron 3 and B-ALL risk was confirmed for all of the SNPs evaluated in our Spanish population. We could not explain this association by the presence of CNVs. We neither detected changes in the expression of ARID5B isoform associated with the genotype of the SNPs.


The intron 3 of ARID5B gene was found to be strongly associated with B-ALL risk in the Spanish population examined. However, neither CNVs nor changes in mRNA expression were found to be responsible for this association.

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The authors would like to thank Xabier Agirre for providing us the RNA of the seven cell lines of ALL and Nerea Bilbao for her contribution to this study. Support by SGIker (UPV/EHU) is gratefully acknowledged. This project was supported by RTICS (RD/06/0020/0048), Basque Government (GIC10/71), and UPV/EHU (UFI11/35). AGC was supported by a predoctoral grant from the Gangoiti Barrera Foundation. ELL was supported by a “Fellowship for recent Doctors until their integration in postdoctoral programs” by the Investigation Vice-rector’s office of the UPV/EHU.

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The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

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Correspondence to África García-Orad.

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Gutiérrez-Camino, Á., López-López, E., Martín-Guerrero, I. et al. Intron 3 of the ARID5B gene: a hot spot for acute lymphoblastic leukemia susceptibility. J Cancer Res Clin Oncol 139, 1879–1886 (2013). https://doi.org/10.1007/s00432-013-1512-3

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  • Acute lymphoblastic leukemia
  • Childhood
  • ARID5B
  • Susceptibility
  • Polymorphisms
  • Function