Researchers have detected two new genetic markers of breast cancer survival, a recent study published in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute has shown.

Survival after breast cancer diagnoses varies substantially between patients. Many factors, such as inherited genetic variation, potentially influence clinical outcomes of an individual patient.

For the large meta-analysis, researchers identified 37,954 patients of European ancestry with 2,900 deaths from breast cancer. Of those, 6,881 patients were estrogen receptor (ER)-negative and 23,059 were ER-positive. Analyses were conducted used a common reference panel from the 1000 Genomes Project.

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Results of the study showed that a new locus (rs2059614 at 11q24.2) was associated with survival in patients with ER-negative breast cancer (HR = 1.95; 95% CI: 1.55, 2.47; P = 1.91×10^-8).

In addition, a second locus (rs148760487 at 2q24.2) was associated with survival in ER-positive and ER-negative breast cancer cases. This finding was less robust than the first locus identified.

The researchers note that the results confirm that germline genotype can provide prognostic information in addition to typical tumor prognostic influences.


  1. Guo Q, Schmidt MK, Kraft P, et al. Identification of novel genetic markers of breast cancer survival. J Natl Cancer Inst. 2015; 107(5). doi: 10.1093/jnci/djv081.