Navigation Links
Genes Hike Melanoma Risk Even in Those Who Tan Well
Date:4/21/2009

Study finds chances of getting deadly skin cancer higher despite darker coloring

TUESDAY, April 21 (HealthDay News) -- If you have dark eyes, dark hair and tan easily, you might think you don't have to worry much about melanoma.

But new research shows that variations of a particular gene can raise the risk of this deadly skin cancer, even in people whose ability to tan may make them appear to be at low risk.

Having a variant of the melanocortin-1 receptor gene (MCIR) puts people who have dark hair, dark eyes and who tan easily at more than twice the risk of getting melanoma as those with similar complexions who don't have the variant.

"Traditionally, a clinician might look at a person with dark hair who did not sunburn easily and classify them as lower risk for melanoma, but that may not be true for all people in the population," said Peter Kanetsky, an assistant professor of epidemiology at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine and a co-author of research on the topic. "Just because you tolerate sun exposure fairly well doesn't mean that you're not at increased risk for melanoma."

The findings were to be presented Tuesday at the American Association for Cancer Research annual meeting in Denver.

The researchers examined 779 people with melanoma at the Pigmented Lesion Clinic at the University of Pennsylvania and 325 people who did not have melanoma. They analyzed the participants' MCIR variant status and had them fill out questionnaires about sun exposure, ability to tan and their physical appearance.

Previous research has identified more than 50 versions of the MCIR gene, about four of which have been linked to an increased risk for melanoma, Kanetsky said.

In the study, about 70 percent of the healthy participants had some variant of the gene, and nearly 27 percent had one of the four high-risk variants.

Among the participants with melanoma, about 78 percent had a gene variant and 43 percent had a high-risk variant.

Those who had dark eyes and an MCIR variant had a about a threefold greater risk of developing melanoma than did those with dark eyes but no variant. Those who did not freckle but who had the high-risk variant had an eightfold increased risk, and those who tanned moderately or deeply after repeated sun exposure had about twice the risk.

"They're finding that in people who are able to tan, who conceivably could have been educated not to worry about the sun, the presence of those variants does confer increased risk of developing melanoma, compared to those who do not have the MCIR variant," said Dr. David Fisher, chief of dermatology at Massachusetts General Hospital and a dermatology professor at Harvard Medical School.

Having a variation of the MCIR gene has been shown in prior research to be associated with having red hair, freckles and fair skin. It's also been associated with a higher risk of melanoma, even when adjusting for lighter skin tone, lighter hair and lighter eyes, Kanetsky said.

In this study, the MCIR variant in people with red or blond hair did not affect melanoma rates.

Researchers are not sure why the MCIR variant didn't seem to boost melanoma risk in the fair-haired group, but they suspect that other biological processes or genes could be at work, causing the increased melanoma risk.

Melanoma, the most serious form of skin cancer, is highly curable when caught early. In 2008, an estimated 8,420 people in the United States died from it, according to the American Cancer Society. There were about 62,000 new cases.

Currently, there is no commercially available test for MCIR variants.

More information

The Skin Cancer Foundation has more on melanoma.



SOURCES: Peter Kanetsky, Ph.D., M.P.H., assistant professor, epidemiology, University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, Philadelphia; David Fisher, M.D., Ph.D., chief, dermatology department, Massachusetts General Hospital, and professor, dermatology, Harvard Medical School, Boston; April 21, 2009, presentation, American Association for Cancer Research annual meeting, Denver


'/>"/>
Copyright©2009 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved  

Related medicine news :

1. Dark hair? Dont burn? Your genes may still put you at risk for melanoma
2. Progen Technology Switches on Cancer Fighting Genes and Inhibits Tumor Growth
3. Scientists Spot Stroke Genes
4. Genesis Pharmaceuticals Affirms Operating Income Guidance, Adjusts Revenue Guidance for Fiscal 2009
5. Cardiogenesis Reports Fourth Quarter and Fiscal Year 2008 Results
6. New Directions in Angioedema: A Focus on Pathogenesis and Classification
7. Scientists Identify More Breast Cancer Genes
8. Angiogenesis inhibitor improves brain tumor survival by reducing edema
9. Genes May Boost Harm to Kids From Secondhand Smoke
10. Right warfarin dose determined by 3 genes
11. Genes May Decide Which Smokers Get Lung Disease
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Genes Hike Melanoma Risk Even in Those Who Tan Well
(Date:6/24/2016)... , ... June 24, 2016 , ... ... and Scientific Sessions in Dallas that it will receive two significant new grants ... grants came as PHA marked its 25th anniversary by recognizing patients, medical professionals ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... Comfort Keepers® of San Diego, CA ... the Road To Recovery® program to drive cancer patients to and from their cancer ... ensure the highest quality of life and ongoing independence. Getting to and from ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... ... the Clinical Decision Making in Emergency Medicine conference in Ponte Vedra Beach, FL. ... articles published in Emergency Medicine Practice and Pediatric Emergency Medicine Practice. ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... Strategic Capital Partners, LLC ... by obtaining investment capital for emerging technology companies. SCP has delivered investment ... resulted in more than a million dollars of capital investment for five companies. ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... Gaithersburg, MD (PRWEB) , ... June 24, 2016 ... ... and protocols for human induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells and other difficult to ... PluriQ™ G9™ Cloning Medium. The PluriQ™ G9™ Gene Editing System is ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/24/2016)... BEIJING , June 24, 2016 Dehaier ... or the "Company"), which develops, markets and sells medical ... China , signed a strategic cooperation agreement with ... as "Hongyuan Supply Chain") on June 20, 2016, to ... Under the strategic cooperation agreement, Dehaier will leverage Hongyuan ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... -- Research and Markets has announced the addition ... report to their offering. ... The World Market for Companion Diagnostics covers the world ... in the report includes the following: , ... by Region (N. America, EU, ROW), 2015-2020 , World ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... LEXINGTON, Mass. , June 24, 2016   ... specialty pharmaceutical company developing innovative inhaled drugs, announced today ... when Russell Investments reconstituted its comprehensive set ... 2016. "This is an important milestone for ... "It will increase shareholder awareness of our progress in ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: