A study by a Graduate School student and his faculty advisers won first place in a research poster competition held during the First International Scientific Conference of St. Luke’s Molecular Medicine Society. The conference was held in the Angelo King Auditorium of St. Luke’s College of Medicine, Quezon City, Philippines, from November 11-12, 2017.

Julius Adrle Garcia and one of his faculty advisers, Asst. Prof. Pia Marie S.P. Albano, PhD, co-wrote the paper “XRCC4 G-1394T Single Nucleotide Polymorphisms and Breast Cancer Risk: Association with Lifestyle, Family History of Cancer, and Reproductive Health.” Serving as co-writers are Dr. Teresa Sy-Ortin, MD of the USTH Benavides Cancer Institute and Prof. Maria Cristina Ramos, PhD of the College of Science.

The study aimed to identify whether XRCC4 G-1394T single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNP) interact with lifestyle, family history of cancer, or reproductive health, following previous studies that pont to its association with breast cancer risk.

A total of 103 breast cancer cases seen at the UST Hospital, Manila were age- and sex-matched with clinically health controls. Genomic DNA extracted from blood samples of participants were screened XRCC4 G-1394T SNPs by polymerase chain reaction – restriction fragment length polymorphism (PCR-RFLP).

XRCC4 G-1394T was associated with oral contraceptive use, younger age at first childbirth, and tobacco use, but not with family history of cancer. The study suggeted that XRCC4 G-1394T SNP, in combination with other known risk factors, may increase breast cancer susceptibility.

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