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BACKGROUND: CYP2C9 enzymes are involved in non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) metabolism. Therefore, we investigated whether CYP2C9*2 and *3 variant alleles, encoding for enzymes with lower activity, increased the protective effect of NSAIDs on colorectal cancer. METHODS: Individual and combined associations of NSAIDs and CYP2C9*2 and *3 variant alleles with colorectal cancer were studied in 7757 Caucasian individuals of The Rotterdam Study, a population-based prospective cohort since 1990. Additive and multiplicative effect modification models were used to examine drug-gene interactions. RESULTS: There were 212 incident cases of colorectal cancer during follow-up. A reduced risk of colorectal cancer was observed in individuals who used NSAIDs for more than a year (HR 0.45; 95% CI 0.28 to 0.71), and in carriers of an CYP2C9 variant allele associated with lower enzymatic activity (HR 0.67; 95% CI 0.47 to 0.96). The combination of both determinants was associated with a further risk reduction but without synergy. CONCLUSION: Both NSAID use and CYP2C9*2 and/ or *3 carriage are associated with a reduced risk of colorectal cancer. However, no interaction between the determinants was found, which might indicate independent pathophysiological mechanisms.


Journal article


The Netherlands journal of medicine

Publication Date





134 - 141


Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, Erasmus University Medical Centre, Rotterdam, the Netherland.


Humans, Colorectal Neoplasms, Aryl Hydrocarbon Hydroxylases, Anti-Inflammatory Agents, Non-Steroidal, Proportional Hazards Models, Risk Factors, Prospective Studies, Genotype, Alleles, Aged, Aged, 80 and over, Middle Aged, Netherlands, Female, Male