About 10% of pancreatic cancers are inherited. However, factors influencing tumorigenesis in familial pancreatic cancer are not understood.
In this study, researchers from the United States determined whether smoking and other factors could predict cancer risk in familial pancreatic cancer kindreds.
The team conducted a nested case-control study, and included 251 members of 28 families.
|Smokers developed cancer 1 decade earlier than nonsmokers.|
All families in the study had 2 or more members with pancreatic cancer.
The team assessed the effects of smoking, young age of onset within the family, diabetes mellitus, sex, and number/standing of affected relatives on the risk of pancreatic cancer.
The researchers found that smoking was an independent risk factor for familial pancreatic cancer (OR 3.7). The risk was greatest in males (OR 5.2), and subjects younger than 50 (OR 7.6).
They determined that smokers developed cancer 1 decade earlier than nonsmokers (59.6 versus 69.1 years).
Furthermore, the number of affected first-degree relatives also increased risk.
The team did not find diabetes to be a risk factor for pancreatic cancer, however diabetes was associated with pancreatic dysplasia.
The team also found that one third of families demonstrated genetic anticipation, as the mean age of onset decreased by 2 decades between generations.
Dr Stephen Rulyak's team concluded, "Smoking is a strong risk factor in familial pancreatic cancer kindreds, particularly among males and those under age 50".
"Persons with multiple affected first-degree relatives are also at increased risk".
"These factors may be useful in selecting candidates for pancreatic cancer screening".
"Members of families with multiple pancreatic cancers should be counseled not to smoke".