669. Bovine leukemia virus is strongly associated with breast cancer in Australian women
Session: Poster Abstract Session: Oh, Those Pesky Viruses!
Thursday, October 27, 2016
Room: Poster Hall
Background: While risk factors such as age, reproductive history, diet and exercise account for ~90% of sporadic breast cancer cases, an initiating agent preceding the 20-30 year cancerous transition of mammary epithelium has yet to be identified. The oncogenic deltaretrovirus bovine leukemia virus (BLV) has been found in 100% of large-scale dairy herds in the US, and is known to cause clinical leukosis in <5% of infected cattle, as well as infect bovine mammary epithelial cells.

Methods: Previously, our lab demonstrated a strong association between in situ PCR-confirmed BLV-related DNA and pathologist-confirmed breast cancer, using 239 paraffin-embedded tissue samples from the Cooperative Human Tissue Network in the USA. Using a similar in situ PCR method with tissue samples from 105 cases from Australia, we found a similarly strong association between breast cancer and BLV.

Results: In this independent sample from Australia, a country with high female breast cancer incidence, we found strong evidence of association between bovine leukemia virus and female breast cancer (unadjusted odds ratio = 5.68 (95% CI 2.11 – 15.75, p = 0.0001; age-adjusted odds ratio = 4.72, 95% CI 1.71 – 13.05, p = 0.003).

Conclusion: These preliminary results bolster the argument for BLV as a potential cancer-causing agent.

Gertrude Buehring, PhD1, Hua Min Shen, MD1, Daniel Schwartz, BA MA2 and James Lawson, AM, MD3, (1)School of Public Health, University of California Berkeley, Berkeley, CA, (2)UC Berkeley-UCSF Joint Medical Program, Berkeley, CA, (3)School of Biotechnology and Biomolecular Science, University of New South Wales, Kensington, Australia

Disclosures:

G. Buehring, None

H. M. Shen, None

D. Schwartz, None

J. Lawson, None

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