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TGen-led team is 1 of 7 selected for $1 million skin-cancer grants
Date:8/3/2009

population has among the nation's highest incidence rate of skin cancer. Australia has the highest incidence rate of the disease in the world.

The TGen-led team was one of seven multidisciplinary groups who received a total of $6.9 million in awards June 30 from the Washington, D.C.-based Melanoma Research Alliance (MRA) to pursue novel, outcomes-driven melanoma research.

These awards are part of the MRA's second round of grants focused on research that addresses gaps in translational science. In its second year of grant-making, MRA is now supporting 37 of the most promising melanoma research programs worldwide, totaling more than $16 million (including $6.9 million awarded July 30) in an effort to accelerate progress toward a cure.

"We are energized by the quality of proposals we continue to receive from the melanoma research community. In this latest round of grants, we are pleased to support seven multidisciplinary approaches that hold great potential to advance melanoma treatments," said Dr. Suzanne Topalian, M.D., Chair of the MRA Grant Review Committee and Director of the Johns Hopkins Melanoma Program.

According to the grant description presented by Dr. Trent:

"Early detection of cutaneous malignant melanoma offers the best form of cure. Characterization of the genes influencing melanoma risk is critical towards efforts aimed at disease prevention and early detection.

"Studies of families with multiple melanoma patients have identified mutations in two genes that strongly predispose to the disease, but these mutations are found only in a minority of families.

"To identify additional genes, the International Melanoma Genetics Consortium (GenoMEL) recently completed the largest genetic study of melanoma families to date, comprising 174 families with three or more melanoma patients. This study identified two chromosome positions likely to harbor melanoma susceptibility genes, while a separate smalle
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Contact: Steve Yozwiak
syozwiak@tgen.org
602-343-8704
The Translational Genomics Research Institute
Source:Eurekalert

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