Repair-Assisted Damage Detection Reveals Biological Disparities in Prostate Cancer between African Americans and European Americans

Academic Article


  • African Americans (AA) are two times more likely to be diagnosed with and succumb to prostate cancer (PCa) compared to European Americans (EA). There is mounting evidence that biological differences in these tumors contribute to disparities in patient outcomes. Our goal was to examine the differences in DNA damage in AA and EA prostate tissues. Tissue microarrays with matched tumor-benign adjacent pairs from 77 AA and EA PCa patients were analyzed for abasic sites, oxidative lesions, crosslinks, and uracil content using the Repair Assisted Damage Detection (RADD) assay. Our analysis revealed that AA PCa, overall, have more DNA damage than EA PCa. Increased uracil and pyrimidine lesions occurred in AA tumors, while EA tumors had more oxidative lesions. AA PCa have higher levels of UMP and folate cycle metabolites than their EA counterparts. AA PCa showed higher levels of UNG, the uracil-specific glycosylase, than EA, despite uracil lesions being retained within the genome. AA patients also had lower levels of the base excision repair protein XRCC1. These results indicate dysfunction in the base excision repair pathway in AA tumors. Further, these findings reveal how metabolic rewiring in AA PCa drives biological disparities and identifies a targetable axis for cancer therapeutics.
  • Authors

    Published In

  • Cancers  Journal
  • Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Krieger KL; Gohlke JH; Lee KJ; Piyarathna DWB; Castro PD; Jones JA; Ittmann MM; Gassman NR; Sreekumar A
  • Volume

  • 14
  • Issue

  • 4