Previous studies showing the presence of antibodies against tumor-associated antigens in healthy individuals suggest that antibody-dependent cell cytotoxicity (ADCC) might play a role in the development of breast cancer. We hypothesized that functional polymorphisms in fragment c gamma receptor (FcgR) genes were associated with breast cancer risk. We conducted hospital-based case-control studies of patients aged 20-74 years with invasive breast cancer, and matched controls from medical checkup examinees in Nagano, Japan and from cancer-free patients in São Paulo, Brazil. A total of 869 pairs (403 Japanese, 80 Japanese Brazilians and 386 non-Japanese Brazilians) were genotyped for two single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs): a histidine (H)/arginine (R) polymorphism at position 131 of FcgRIIa (FcgRIIa H131R) and a valine (V)/phenylalanine (F) polymorphism at position 158 of FcgRIIIa (FcgRIIIa F158V). We found no statistically significant association between either of the two SNPs and breast cancer risk regardless of population. In analyses of the three populations combined, adjusted odds ratio (OR) was 0.93 [95% confidence interval (CI) 0.66-1.32] for women with the R/R versus H/H genotype of the FcgRIIa H131R polymorphism and 1.04 (95% CI 0.69-1.57) for the V/V versus F/F genotype of the FcgRIIIa F158V polymorphism. On combination of the two SNPs, compared to women with both the R/R genotype of the FcgRIIa H131R polymorphism and F/F genotype of the FcgRIIIa F158V polymorphism, the adjusted OR for women with both the H/H and V/V genotype was 0.68 (95% CI 0.37-1.27). In conclusion, our findings suggest that ADCC might not play a major role in the etiology of breast cancer.