Osteosarcoma is the most common primary bone malignancy that occurs mostly in adolescents. Treatment protocols usually include multiagent preoperative and postoperative chemotherapy based on methotrexate, cisplatin, doxorubicin and ifosfamide. Despite a favourable prognosis, there are considerable interindividual differences in treatment outcome. Genetic variability of enzymes involved in the metabolism and transport of methotrexate could contribute towards observed differences in response to chemotherapy. Our aim was to evaluate how polymorphisms in the folate pathway and transporter genes influence treatment outcome in osteosarcoma patients.
Patients and methods
In total, 44 osteosarcoma patients treated with methotrexate were genotyped for eleven polymorphisms in four folate pathway and five folate transporter genes. Cox regression was used in survival analysis. Logistic regression was used to assess the influence of polymorphisms on treatment efficacy and toxicity and nonparametric tests were used to determine the influence on serum methotrexate levels.
Polymorphic SLCO1B1 rs4149056 and rs11045879 alleles were associated with significantly higher serum methotrexate area under the curve (P=0.001 and 0.011, respectively). Carriers of at least one polymorphic SLCO1B1 rs4149056 and rs11045879 allele tended to have longer event-free survival compared with patients with two wild-type alleles [P=0.040, hazard ratio (HR)=0.26, 95% confidence interval (CI)=0.07–0.94; and P=0.034, HR=0.20, 95% CI=0.05–0.89, respectively]. Compared with the most common haplotype, carriers of both polymorphic alleles had significantly longer event-free survival (P=0.009, HR=0.27, 95% CI=0.10–0.72).
We have shown that SLCO1B1 polymorphisms influence methotrexate disposition and survival in methotrexate-treated osteosarcoma patients and therefore might serve as pharmacogenetic markers of treatment outcome.