Immunogenetic Profiles and Associations of Breast, Cervical, Ovarian, and Uterine Cancers

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4 Scopus citations


It is increasingly recognized that the human immune response influences cancer risk, progression, and survival; consequently, there is growing interest in the role of human leukocyte antigen (HLA), genes that play a critical role in initiating the immune response, on cancer. Recent evidence documented clustering of cancers based on immunogenetic profiles such that breast and ovarian cancers clustered together as did uterine and cervical cancers. Here we extend that line of research to evaluate the HLA profile of those 4 cancers and their associations. Specifically, we evaluated the associations between the frequencies of 127 HLA alleles and the population prevalences of breast, ovarian, cervical, and uterine cancer in 14 countries in Continental Western Europe. Factor analysis and hierarchical clustering were used to evaluate groupings of cancers based on their immunogenetic profiles. The results documented highly similar immunogenetic profiles for breast and ovarian cancers that were characterized predominantly by protective HLA effects. In addition, highly similar immunogenetic profiles for cervical and uterine cancers were observed that were, conversely, characterized by susceptibility effects. In light of the role of HLA in host immune system protection against non-self antigens, these findings suggest that certain cancers may be associated with similar contributory factors such as viral oncoproteins or neoantigens.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalCancer Informatics
StatePublished - Jan 1 2023

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The author(s) disclosed receipt of the following financial support for the research, authorship, and/or publication of this article: Partial funding for this study was provided by the University of Minnesota (the Anita Kunin Chair in Women’s Healthy Brain Aging, the Brain and Genomics Fund, the McKnight Presidential Chair of Cognitive Neuroscience, and the American Legion Brain Sciences Chair) and the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. The sponsors had no role in the current study design, analysis or interpretation, or in the writing of this paper. The contents do not represent the views of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs or the United States Government.

Publisher Copyright:
© The Author(s) 2023.


  • Breast cancer
  • cervical cancer
  • genetics
  • human leukocyte antigen
  • immunity
  • ovarian cancer
  • uterine cancer

PubMed: MeSH publication types

  • Journal Article


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