Family cancer history and risk of brain tumors in children: results of the SEARCH international brain tumor study
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To examine whether childhood brain tumors (CBTs) are associated with a family history of brain tumors or other cancers in an international case–control study.
Cancers in children’s first- and second-degree relatives were ascertained by interview with parents of 620 children with astroglial tumors, 255 with primitive neuroectodermal tumors, 324 with other CBTs, and 2,218 controls from Australia, Canada, France, Israel, Italy, Spain, and the US. These were used with histories of neurofibromatosis or tuberous sclerosis to exclude in subanalyses children with Li-Fraumeni or other hereditary syndromes predisposing to brain tumors.
A first- or second-degree relative of 4% of children with astroglial tumors, 6% with PNET, 5% with other CBTs, and 5% of controls had had a brain tumor. Any potential differences were statistically non-significant, including when focusing on relatives diagnosed in childhood. In the US, where anatomical sites of relatives’ other cancers were known, CBT occurrence was not associated with any other specific site. Results were not markedly altered by exclusion of children with hereditary syndromes.
Consistent with most prior studies using these methods, we observed no strong relationship between CBT occurrence and cancers in family members.
KeywordsChildren Heredity Nervous system neoplasms
Financial support This work was supported by Grant CA 47082 from the National Institutes of Health (NIH). In Seattle, this work was also supported by the Cancer Surveillance System of the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, funded by contract N01-CN-05230 from the Surveillance, Epidemiology and End Results Program of the National Cancer Institute with additional support from the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center. Dr. Searles Nielsen’s participation in this project was supported in part by grant number ES07262 from the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS), NIH. In Los Angeles, cancer incidence data were collected under contracts 050 (C-G)-8709 from the State of California Department of Health Services; support to conduct the study was provided by Grant CA17054 from NIH and from grant 5 P30 ES07048-06 from the NIEHS, NIH. In San Francisco, support to conduct the study was provided by NIH Grant CA47082. In Milan, support was provided by the National Research Council Oncology project (8687CNR) and Associazione Italiana Ricerca Cancro (8889AIRC). The National Childhood Cancer Registry of Spain is in the ISCIII-RTIC RD06/0020, and has partial support from the Villavecchia Foundation and the Scientific Foundation of the AECC.
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