This study aims to evaluate associations between variations in genes involved in the metabolism of environmental chemicals and steroid hormones and risk of menopause in smokers.
Survival analysis was performed on 410 eligible participants from the Penn Ovarian Aging study (ongoing for 14 years), a cohort study of late-reproductive-age women. Single nucleotide polymorphisms at the following loci were studied: COMT Val158Met, CYP1B1*4 Asn452Ser, CYP1B1*3 Leu432Val, and CYP3A4*1B.
Significant interactions between smoking and single nucleotide polymorphisms were observed in European-American carriers of CYP3A4*1B and CYP1B1*3, supporting a greater risk of menopause entry compared with those not carrying these alleles. Among CYP1B1*3 carriers, smokers had a greater risk of menopause entry than nonsmokers (adjusted hazard ratio [HR], 2.26; 95% CI, 1.4-3.67; median time to menopause, 10.42 and 11.07 y, respectively). No association between smoking and menopause was identified in CYP1B1 wild types. Among CYP3A4*1B carriers, smokers were at greater risk for menopause entry than nonsmokers (adjusted HR, 15.1; 95% CI, 3.31-69.2; median time to menopause, 11.36 and 13.91 y, respectively). Risk of menopause entry in CYP3A4 wild types who smoked was far lower (adjusted HR, 1.59; 95% CI, 1.03-2.44). Heavily smoking CYP1B1*3 carriers (adjusted HR, 3.0; 95% CI, 1.54-5.84; median time to menopause, 10.41 y) and heavily smoking CYP3A4*1B carriers (adjusted HR, 17.79; 95% CI, 3.21-98.65; median time to menopause, 5.09 y) had the greatest risk of menopause entry.
Our finding that the risk of menopause entry in European-American smokers varies depending on genetic background represents a novel gene-environment interaction in reproductive aging.