Tumor Biology

, Volume 35, Issue 1, pp 339–343 | Cite as

Quantitative assessment of the association between MTHFR rs1801131 polymorphism and risk of liver cancer

  • Tie-Jun Liang
  • Hui Liu
  • Xiao-Qian Zhao
  • Yan-Rong Tan
  • Kai Jing
  • Cheng-Yong Qin
Research Article


Methylenetetrahydrofolate reductase (MTHFR) is one of the most important enzymes for folate metabolism which plays a key role in cell metabolism. MTHFR rs1801131 (A1298C) polymorphism can decrease in vitro MTHFR enzyme activity and has been hypothesized to be associated with liver cancer risk. This study aimed to quantify the strength of the association between MTHFR rs1801131 polymorphism and liver cancer risk by performing a meta-analysis. We searched the PubMed and Wanfang databases for studies relating on the association between MTHFR rs1801131 polymorphism and risk of liver cancer. Seven studies with 2,030 cases of liver cancer and 3,096 controls were finally included into the meta-analysis. Meta-analysis of a total of seven studies showed that the homozygote genotype CC of MTHFR rs1801131 polymorphism was significantly associated with decreased risk of liver cancer (for CC versus AA: odds ratio (OR) = 0.65, 95 % confidence interval (CI) 0.47–0.89, P = 0.007; for CC versus AA + AC: OR = 0.65, 95 % CI 0.48–0.89, P = 0.006). Subgroup by race showed that the homozygote genotype CC of MTHFR rs1801131 polymorphism was significantly associated with decreased risk of liver cancer in Asians (CC versus AA: OR = 0.64, 95 % CI 0.46–0.90, P = 0.010; for CC versus AA + AC: OR = 0.63, 95 % CI 0.45–0.88, P = 0.007). However, the association in Caucasians was still unclear owing to the limited data available now. Thus, Asian individuals with the homozygote genotype CC of MTHFR rs1801131 polymorphism are significantly associated with decreased risk of liver cancer. The association in Caucasians needs further studies.


MTHFR Polymorphism Liver cancer Meta-analysis 



This work supported by the Natural Science Foundation of Shandong Province of China (ZR2012HM070).

Conflicts of interest



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Copyright information

© International Society of Oncology and BioMarkers (ISOBM) 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Tie-Jun Liang
    • 1
  • Hui Liu
    • 1
  • Xiao-Qian Zhao
    • 1
  • Yan-Rong Tan
    • 1
  • Kai Jing
    • 2
  • Cheng-Yong Qin
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Digestive DiseasesProvincial Hospital Affiliated to Shandong UniversityJinanPeople’s Republic of China
  2. 2.Gastrointestinal SurgeryHuaiyin HospitalJinanPeople’s Republic of China

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