Background: Due to differences in genetic background, it is unclear whether the genetic loci identified by the previous genome-wide association studies (GWAS) of pancreatic cancer also play significant roles in the development of pancreatic cancer among the Taiwanese population. Methods: This study aimed to validate the 25 pancreatic cancer GWAS-identified single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in a case-control study (278 cases and 658 controls) of pancreatic cancer conducted in Taiwan. Statistical analyses were conducted to determine the associations between the GWAS-identified SNPs and pancreatic cancer risk. Gene-environment interaction analysis was conducted to evaluate the interactions between SNPs and environmental factors on pancreatic cancer risk. Results: Among the 25 GWAS-identified SNPs, 7 (rs2816938 (~ 11 kb upstream of NR5A2), rs10094872 (~ 28 kb upstream of MYC), rs9581943 (200 bp upstream of PDX1) and 4 chromosome 13q22.1 SNPs: rs4885093, rs9573163, rs9543325, rs9573166) showed a statistically significant association with pancreatic cancer risk in the current study. Additional analyses showed two significant gene-environment interactions (between poor oral hygiene and NR5A2 rs2816938 and between obesity and PDX1 rs9581943) on the risk of pancreatic cancer. Conclusions: The current study confirmed the associations between 7 of the 25 GWAS-identified SNPs and pancreatic risk among the Taiwanese population. Furthermore, pancreatic cancer was jointly influenced by lifestyle and medical factors, genetic polymorphisms, and gene-environment interaction. Additional GWAS is needed to determine the genetic polymorphisms that are more relevant to the pancreatic cancer cases occurring in Taiwan.
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