Interplay between Genome, Metabolome and Microbiome in Colorectal Cancer


Colorectal cancer (CRC), a major health concern, is developed depending on environmental, genetic and microbial factors. The microbiome and metabolome have been analyzed to study their role in CRC. However, the interplay of host genetics with those layers in CRC remains unclear.


120 individuals were sequenced and association analyses were carried out for adenoma and CRC risk, and for selected components of the microbiome and metabolome. The epistasis between genes located in cholesterol pathways was analyzed; modifiable risk factors were studied using Mendelian randomization; and the three omic layers were used to integrate their data and to build risk prediction models.


We detected genetic variants that were associated to components of metabolome or microbiome and adenoma or CRC risk (e.g., in LINC01605, PROKR2 and CCSER1 genes). In addition, we found interactions between genes of cholesterol metabolism, and HDL cholesterol levels affected adenoma (p = 0.0448) and CRC (p = 0.0148) risk. The combination of the three omic layers to build risk prediction models reached high AUC values (>0.91).


The use of the three omic layers allowed for the finding of biological mechanisms related to the development of adenoma and CRC, and each layer provided complementary information to build risk prediction models.


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