The aim of this study was to identify candidate single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) that might play a role in susceptibility to neuroblastoma, elucidate their potential mechanisms, and generate SNP-to-gene-to-pathway hypotheses. A genome-wide association study (GWAS) dataset of neuroblastoma that included 442,976 SNPs from 1,627 neuroblastoma patients and 3,254 control subjects of European descent was used in this study. The identify candidate causal SNPs and pathways (ICSNPathway) analysis was applied to the GWAS dataset. ICSNPathway analysis identified 15 candidate SNPs, 10 genes, and 31 pathways, which revealed 10 hypothetical biological mechanisms. The strongest hypothetical biological mechanism was one wherein SNPrs40401 modulates the role of IL3 in several pathways and conditions, including the stem pathway, asthma (hsa05310), the dendritic cell pathway, and development (0.001 < p < 0.004; 0.001 < FDR < 0.033). The second strongest mechanism identified was that in which rs1048108 and rs16852600 alter the function of BARD1, which negatively regulates developmental process and modulates processes including cell development and programmed cell death (0.001 < p < 0.004; 0.001 < FDR < 0.033). The third mechanism identified was one wherein rs1939212 modulated CFL1, resulting in negative regulation of development, cell death, neural crest cell migration, and apoptosis (0.001 < p < 0.004; 0.001 < FDR < 0.033). By using the ICSNPathway to analyze neuroblastoma GWAS data, 15 candidate SNPs, 10 genes including IL3, BARD1, and CFL, and 31 pathways were identified that might contribute to the susceptibility of patients to neuroblastoma.
- Genome-wide association study
- Pathway-based analysis
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