Hodgkin's lymphoma (HL) is a heterogeneous hemopoietic malignancy. Previous studies have implicated a genetic etiology responsible for familial HL. We have estimated the heritability of HL and tested the hypothesis of genetic anticipation by using a high quality cancer database of the Swedish population. Heritability was estimated by employing a threshold-liability model. To test the hypothesis of anticipation, the usual T-test procedure was used to test whether there was a difference in cancer age-of-onset between parents and children who were affected with HL. A randomization test was carried out to test the validity of the P-values. Additional analyses were performed after stratifying the data based on birth cohorts. This data set revealed that there was a difference between the age-of-onset of parents and of offspring who were affected with HL. We also estimated the heritability of HL in the Swedish population to be approximately 28.4%. Both findings provide further evidence for a genetic basis for HL.
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