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Introduction: Expression of human telomerase reverse transcriptase (hTERT) occurs in most cancers but its relation with obesity is unclear. This study explores the association between leptin levels and anthropometric indices with hTERT mRNA levels in breast cancer patients of different obesity grades.
Materials and methods: In this case-control study, 65 breast cancer patients participated. Expression of tissues hTERT mRNA was carried out by real-time reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction. Leptin concentrations were measured by enzyme-linked immunoassay.
Results: Twelve patients (18.46%) were hTERT negative and 53(81.54%) were positive. hTERT mRNA levels were associated with BMI but not with waist circumference (WC) (r = 0.219, P = 0.22) and waist to hip ratio (WHR) (r = 0.212, P = 0.237). Leptin level and hTERT mRNA levels (r = 0.484, P = 0.008) were correlated as well as BMI and hTERT expression.
Conclusions: This study has shown a correlation between leptin levels and hTERT expression. These findings may clarify the role of leptin in breast carcinogenesis, and hence obesity could be responsible for increased incidences in breast cancer as well as its progression via enhanced production of leptin.
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