Background: Several previous studies have found inverse associations between glioma susceptibility and a history of allergies or other atopic conditions. Some evidence indicates that respiratory allergies are likely to be particularly relevant with regard to glioma risk. Using data from the Glioma International Case-Control Study (GICC), we examined the effects of respiratory allergies and other atopic conditions on glioma risk.
Methods: The GICC contains detailed information on history of atopic conditions for 4,533 cases and 4,171 controls, recruited from 14 study sites across five countries. Using two-stage random-effects restricted maximum likelihood modeling to calculate meta-analysis ORs, we examined the associations between glioma and allergy status, respiratory allergy status, asthma, and eczema.
Results: Having a history of respiratory allergies was associated with an approximately 30% lower glioma risk, compared with not having respiratory allergies (mOR, 0.72; 95% confidence interval, 0.58–0.90). This association was similar when restricting to high-grade glioma cases. Asthma and eczema were also significantly protective against glioma.
Conclusion: A substantial amount of data on the inverse association between atopic conditions and glioma has accumulated, and findings from the GICC study further strengthen the existing evidence that the relationship between atopy and glioma is unlikely to be coincidental.
Impact: As the literature approaches a consensus on the impact of allergies in glioma risk, future research can begin to shift focus to what the underlying biologic mechanism behind this association may be, which could, in turn, yield new opportunities for immunotherapy or cancer prevention. Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev; 25(2); 282–90. ©2016 AACR.
This article is featured in Highlights of This Issue, p. 227
Note: Supplementary data for this article are available at Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention Online (http://cebp.aacrjournals.org/).
- Received August 7, 2015.
- Revision received October 22, 2015.
- Accepted October 23, 2015.
- ©2016 American Association for Cancer Research.