Variations in a region on chromosome 15 containing genes for subunits of the nicotine receptor are associated with an increased risk of lung cancer, according to independent findings by authors of 3 newly published studies. However, the investigators disagreed on whether the link is direct or mediated through nicotine dependence.
Investigators at deCODE genetics, a biopharmaceutical company in Reykjavik, Iceland, discovered that variants in this gene cluster affect the number of cigarettes smoked daily by European smokers and are therefore also associated with risk of lung cancer and peripheral arterial disease (Thorgeirsson TE et al. Nature. 2008;452:638-642).
Hampton T. Genes Linked to Lung Cancer. JAMA. 2008;299(17):2017. doi:10.1001/jama.299.17.2017-a