Navigation Links
Sun-induced skin cancer: new discovery permits doctors to assess genetic risk

As people head to the beach this summer, very few if any, really know how likely they are to develop skin cancer from their outdoor fun. That's about to change, thanks to a new discovery by an international team of scientists that makes it possible for doctors to access people's personal risk for skin cancer.

In a new research report appearing online in The FASEB Journal (, these researchers describe for the first time the chain of molecular events that increase one's risk of skin cancer. This discovery may lead to new tests that access personal skin cancer risk as well as a new generation of sunscreens that increase the skin's ability to protect itself from the sun's damaging rays.

"Our study heralds the onset of personalized medicine for individuals who carry a change in the MC1R gene," said Zalfa A. Abdel-Malek, Ph.D., a researcher involved in the work from the Department of Dermatology at the University of Cincinnati. "The data we have obtained allows us to better predict which individuals will be at risk for skin cancer, as well as potentially why and to what degree. In the future, genetic testing for MC1R gene changes may be clinically available so that individuals can be made aware of the molecular basis of their risk prior to development of cancer."

Abdel-Malek and colleagues found that when a pigmentation gene called the "melanocortin 1 receptor" or MC1R does not function properly, skin cells do not respond to a hormone, called α-MSH, which causes cells to produce dark pigmentation to protect themselves from ultraviolet rays. To make this discovery, the researchers studied 21 human skin cell cultures that express the MC1R gene in different ways. Each culture was studied for expression of genetic changes of MC1R, pigment levels and the ability to respond to α-MSH. The researchers also exposed the cell cultures to ultraviolet rays and measured the amount of DNA damage and the rate of its repair, as well as the percent of surviving melanocytes. Then the scientists inserted a normal version of the MC1R gene into the skin cells and found that they responded properly to ultraviolet light by producing the pigment necessary to protect themselves. These results give researchers testable strategies to reduce or prevent skin cancer. The results also suggest that it may be possible to develop drugs or a new generation of sunscreens that restore the lost function of MC1R.

"This research permits us know our own, personal risk for skin cancer." said Gerald Weissmann, M.D., Editor-in-Chief of The FASEB Journal. "We've known for a long time that smearing on sunscreen is the best way to avoid skin cancer, but never how much or what kind. This study points the way to new kinds of sunscreens that restore their skin's ability to protect itself from DNA damage."


Contact: Cody Mooneyhan
Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology

Related medicine news :

1. Pancreatic cancer: Minimally invasive treatments and possible links to GI diseases
2. Prostate cancer: Risk increases with the number of affected family members
3. Brain cancer: Study focuses on forgotten cells
4. Castrate-Metastatic Prostate Cancer: Therapeutic Considerations for Advanced Disease
5. Scanning for skin cancer: Infrared system looks for deadly melanoma
6. Personalizing cancer: Creating biomarkers from tumor DNA
7. Lung Cancer: Large Impact, Little Funding
8. Exposing the Double Standard of the Forgotten Cancer: Biggest Cancer Killer for Women and Men, Lung Cancer, Receives Least Research Funds
9. U of A discovery offers promising research for spinal-cord injury treatments
10. Discovery of Stem Cell Illuminates Human Brain Evolution, Points To Therapies
11. Gene discovery potential key to cost-competitive cellulosic ethanol
Post Your Comments:
(Date:12/1/2015)... ... , ... Integrated Rental Services (“Integrated Rental”), a growing medical ... , With support from JII, Integrated Rental is poised for expansion while improving ... research labs and medical facilities across the United States. , General Manager Robert ...
(Date:12/1/2015)... (PRWEB) , ... December 01, 2015 , ... Califia ... today announced that its iconic bottle has won top honors in Beverage World Magazine’s ... The Company also announced that it has been selected as a 2015 U.S.A. Taste ...
(Date:12/1/2015)... ... December 01, 2015 , ... ... we have seen vast improvements in scientific research and discoveries, leading us to ... increased hope and relief to those affected by HIV/AIDS. Mediaplanet’s cross-platform edition of ...
(Date:12/1/2015)... ... December 01, 2015 , ... The importance of ... is the focus of numerous abstracts accepted for presentation here, at the 101st ... Nine abstracts highlight the use of Volpara Solutions’ quantitative breast imaging software tools ...
(Date:12/1/2015)... ... December 01, 2015 , ... Next ... selected as a finalist in this year’s Fierce Innovation Awards: Healthcare Edition, an ... was recognized as a finalist in the category of Digital Solutions for its ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:12/1/2015)... 1, 2015 --> ... Drugs Market by Type of Drug (Monoclonal Antibodies, Interferon-Alpha, Interleukins, ... and Pipeline Analysis - Global Forecast to 2020", published by ... USD 73,529.2 Million by 2020 from USD 40,281.6 Million in ... Browse 37 market data ...
(Date:12/1/2015)... BANGALORE, India and ... (NASDAQ, TASE: MYL) today announced that it expects to ... for developing country markets funded by international donors, TLE400 ... + Efavirenz 400 mg) for $99 per patient, per ... (CHAI) to develop TLE400. The significantly reduced price could ...
(Date:12/1/2015)... 1, 2015  AccuTEC Blades, a leader in ... logo and brand identity program. The new logo ... of bladed products where "the edge makes all ... --> Serving manufacturers and distributors of medical, ... equipment, AccuTEC,s product lines include those acquired when ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: