MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are small non-coding RNA molecules, which participate in diverse biological processes and may regulate tumor suppressor genes or oncogenes. Single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in miRNA may contribute to diverse functional consequences, including cancer development, by altering miRNA expression. Numerous studies have shown the association between miRNA SNPs and cancer risk; however, the results are generally debatable and inconclusive, mainly due to limited statistical power. To assess the relationship between the five most common SNPs (miR-146a rs2910164, miR-196a2 rs11614913, miR-499 rs3746444, miR-149 rs2292832, and miR-27a rs895919) and the risk cancer development, we performed a meta-analysis of 66 published case-control studies. Crude odds ratios at 95 % confidence intervals were used to investigate the strength of the association. No association was observed between rs2910164 and cancer risk in the overall group. However, in stratified analysis, we found that either the rs2910164 C allele or the CC genotype was protective against bladder cancer, prostate cancer, cervical cancer, and colorectal cancer, whereas it was a risk factor for papillary thyroid carcinoma and squamous cell carcinoma of the head and neck (SCCHN). Further, rs11614913 was found to be significantly associated with decreased cancer risk, in particular, for bladder cancer, gastric cancer, and SCCHN. For miR-499, a significant association was found between the rs3746444 polymorphism and cancer risk in pooled analysis. In subgroup analysis, similar results were mainly observed for breast cancer. Finally, no association was foun
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